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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I already have a nice Varrox vaporizer, a good 12V/12.5A transformer that ive tested with the Varrox, and enough wood bleach to last until eternity.

Is there any reason i should buy Apivar strips to suppliment my mite treatment? I have read there is no resistance buildup to the OAV, so i should just use that since ive already invested in all this equipment.... right?
 

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Mites more than double each month. If you start off with only 100 mites coming out of winter do the math. I would use two different treatments for varroa. OA vapor is great but with your long season you'll need to know your mite counts and vaporize alot if that is all you use.
 

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I run 20 hives and did an experiment this Fall once I got the supers off. I put Apivar strips in 12 hives and I OAVd 8 hives (6 treatments on 7 day intervals). Once completed, I did a single shot OAV in each hive, inserted sticky boards and did 48 hour mite counts.

The results were great for both forms of treatment. However, if I had to pick a winner, Apivar was definitely it. My 12 Apivar hives all had mite drop counts below 10, most 0, 1 or 2. My OAVd hives were very good as well with several 0, 1 & 2 mite performers. However, I had one with a 65 mite count and one with a 75 mite count.

Could be that these two hives just got bombed. But, I have had similar experiences with OAV series treatments in prior years where I just had these weird outliers. I have never had an outlier with Apivar. I am sure I will one day. Just my experience.

My current game plan is to use Apivar once supers come off in the Fall and use OAV througout the remainder of the year to keep my mites in check. I am not ready to go to a straight OAV regimen yet. But I might get there one day. It would certainly be much cheaper.
 

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I don't do sticky boards; are 50+ typical?

In August I did pre-treatment alcohol tests on 3 random hives and got 0,1, and 2 per 100. I can't imagine that many dropping. I did 4x5 OAV on all 20 and moved on. I'll do another test and at least one OAV in December depending on brood. In any case, I'll be surprised with much higher numbers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
How often are you guys vaporizing?
I’m hearing 5 and 6 treatments? I was thinking one and done for the season. So really I need to constantly monitor more count.

Clean my board and Pam spray it every week and anytime I see the mite drop count rise I should blast them?

What about the honey supers? Is it really feasible to be escape your supers, then vaporize them and put the supers back each time?
 

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I don't do sticky boards; are 50+ typical?

In August I did pre-treatment alcohol tests on 3 random hives and got 0,1, and 2 per 100. I can't imagine that many dropping. I did 4x5 OAV on all 20 and moved on. I'll do another test and at least one OAV in December depending on brood. In any case, I'll be surprised with much higher numbers.
I don't think we are talking about the same thing. I am not talking about alcohol washes or regular mite drop monitoring on sticky boards. I am talking about putting the sticky board in and hitting the hive with OAV and coming back to count dead mites 48 hours later.
 

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Apivar is extremely effective I saw counts in July of 25 mites in a alcohol wash on two colonies even after a 4 round 5 days apart of oav in July saw all my mite counts stay even if they were under ten in an alcohol wash and the ones above a ten rose by a quarter atleast even after 4 rounds of oav in July. so in August I took 12 hives and did 3 round 7 days apart oa dribble and took 6 hives and put apivar strips in them and left 2 hives without treatment and did a before and after alcohol wash on all 20 colonys and after the apivar every colony had 0 mites in an alcohol wash after the treatment and with the oav or oa dribble I always saw same results the mite counts always stayed close to the same in an alcohol wash when using OA or dribble i had 3 or 4 colonys that i did the oa dribble on in August that started at 7 mites in an alcohol wash and ended at 6 mites in a wash but the rest stayed the same. O and the 2 control hives mite counts doubled every month. Just my take on it I know that's a really small sample size but that's the results I got. I think apivar is really effective if you use as directed you can not use apivar with honey supers on and it has to be in every box that you have on the hive with the max dose being 4 strips per hive so you can't have more than 2 deeps on when you use apivar or it won't work that's where you here all the apivar restance junk that everyone keeps repeating on here. Use it as the label directs and it will work a lot better than oav I think atleast. I would have had to do 8 rounds of oav 5 days apart to see the same results that I did with the apivar. Just my opinion I'm sure people will disagree but do the before and after alcohol washes for yourself and see the results you get just what I got hope this helps or even makes sense.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you all for your extremely helpful advice. I guess i will invest in a 50 pack of Apivar assuming the expiration date is not a joke, and use both methods.

I am assuming you can use OAV with supers as long as you take the supers off while you are vaporizing, therefore being the benefit of doing something with Apivar can not.
 

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Psm: I know they are different. I was surprised at these drop count and wondered if that was normal.

Aaron: if there is brood, OAV must be done in a series over the cycle. I use 4 times 5 days apart; it seems to work better than 3 at 7 day intervals. I find it very effective, but clearly your results may be different. The trade-off is time cost vs material cost, assuming the effectiveness is equal. They aren't putting anything in the supers now, so you can pull them until the spring.
 

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I already have a nice Varrox vaporizer, a good 12V/12.5A transformer that ive tested with the Varrox, and enough wood bleach to last until eternity.

Is there any reason i should buy Apivar strips to suppliment my mite treatment? I have read there is no resistance buildup to the OAV, so i should just use that since ive already invested in all this equipment.... right?
OAV and Apivar are VERY effective at dropping phoretic varroa mite counts. OAV may to some degree kill reproductive varroa mites in the comb that has not been capped yet. You want to use an effective treatment that will kill and knock down reproductive mites hard. To my knowledge there are 3 treatments that will achieve this: MAQS, Formic Pro, and the Mighty Mite Killer. MAQS and Formic Pro are restricted from use above 85 degrees (I would not attempt to use it above 80 and probably more like 75 degrees or risk heavy brood losses or possible loss of queen), the Mighty Mite Killer has no upper temperature limit but the minimum temperature to achieve optimum treatment temperature is 70 degrees (with the use of well placed insulation you can probably treat in a much lower temperature like low 60's even 50's.

In my opinion, the best option is to treat with a product that kills the reproductive varroa mites whenever possible and needed. OAV and Apivar are excellent follow on treatments for the possibility of elevated varroa mite counts during the Fall, Winter, and early Spring when it is too cold to treat with anything else.
 

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It seems you are good to go. I would not use the apivar. To my knowledge there is no confirmation of resistance to OA. It is cheaper, immediate. and give a good kill ratio; all head shots.
 

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i think using different treatments is the way to go. I use OAV but i also use formic pro and apivar throughout the year.
The cost of these products pales into the losses of colonies and the cost of starting over with new nucs.

Both Apivar and formic pro are super easy to use. OAV is cheap and i do 5x5 rounds 2-3x/year of this in addition to the apivar and formic acid.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I treated with OAV last weekend and I thought that would be a one and done for the year but it’s sounding like from you guys I need to do rounds of this treatment.
 

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I just did a couple of rounds of OAV on mostly broodless hives. Alcohol washes a few days after the fact were averaging approx. 1 mite per 300 bee sample (found 9 total mites in 8 washes).
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
You can OAV with feed on. Watch out for SHB on the pattues; they will ruin a hive quick.
When I harvested my one honey super, I found 5ish hive beetles crawling around.

I don’t know if that’s a high number or how many the brood might have. The super was half full. Ive always had beetle blasters installed but I don’t know their effectiveness.

I know we are in hive beetle territory in the south.
 

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Every form of mite treatment has its pros and cons and a place in the treatment world. While PSM1212 has had issues with OAV, I have had issues with Apivar and MAQS too. In my opinion, if you have a hive with a major mite problem, Apivar works too slowly to bring it in line. What I do like Apivar for is hives in an out yard. Put the treatment on and come back next month. It does not get much easier than that. For areas with long extended fall nectar flows, it is not a very good choice for a late summer or fall treatment. Do you really want to remove the honey supers for 40+ days during a nectar flow? In my area, the last nectar flow I have ends about the 4th of July so Apivar works great for a fall treatment. If your flows are over for the year, a late season treatment when the queen is reducing her egg laying is a great time to use Apivar. The mites are spending more time being phoretic and get more time exposed to the Apivar chemicals. If you carefully think about how Apivar can be used in your apiary, you will probably find a good use for it.
 

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Psm: I know they are different. I was surprised at these drop count and wondered if that was normal.
I am new to attempting to monitor mites with OAV treatments, so I am not sure if that is normal or not. I had always done alcohol washes. I suppose if I have 20,000 bees (which is a wild guess) and OAV is 95% effective on phoretic mites, then my infestation rate is roughly 0.4% (if 75 mites are on the board). But I am not real confident in factoring it that way. Any suggestions or comments are welcome.
 
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