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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been treating with OAV for years, not nearly as often since I located, moved and requeened the local robbing hive. Very few bees out here, not too much forage in grassland.
Not many mites.

I had been treating with my Varrox from under the screen on my bottom board, but JW Palmer suggested that the OA was crystalizing on the screen and not treating the bees, which might be why I wasn't getting a significant mite drop. He suggested I make a spacer with a slot for my OA pan to go in. I had these made last winter, but life got complicated and lifting heavy hives without assistance wasn't going well so I never got them on the bottom. I don't like treating thru the front door of a hive, too many bees burned on the pan. and with few mites it hasn't been a big deal.

so today I am off - my helper is sick so I can do bees this afternoon. I was considering lifting the top box off each hive, pulling any fall honey I might need (typically I pull about 2 frames a year for my daughter in the fall, when it's ragweed/goldenrod honey), putting the spacer between top and bottom box, and using a nice big window for a lid to see what's going on. Shove a towel across the front door and another where the sticky board goes in my screened bottom board, and treating with OAV to see what happens. Maybe using a paper sticky under the screen or over it to get an accurate mite drop. What do you think?
 

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Yeah, OAVing through the screen is inefficient, especially when it is cold, although I still do it when it is warm (like 60F). But if you have a spacer, you should be able to do OAV from the hive top, or in the middle as you plan.

To count fallen mites, I usually put a white corrugated plastic board under the screen. It does not have to be sticky. I would also make sure that dead bees are not piled up on the screen (if this concerns you, you can put the board over the screen) and ants are not carrying away dead mites.
 

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I've been treating with OAV for years, not nearly as often since I located, moved and requeened the local robbing hive. Very few bees out here, not too much forage in grassland.
Not many mites.

I had been treating with my Varrox from under the screen on my bottom board, but JW Palmer suggested that the OA was crystalizing on the screen and not treating the bees, which might be why I wasn't getting a significant mite drop. He suggested I make a spacer with a slot for my OA pan to go in. I had these made last winter, but life got complicated and lifting heavy hives without assistance wasn't going well so I never got them on the bottom. I don't like treating thru the front door of a hive, too many bees burned on the pan. and with few mites it hasn't been a big deal.

so today I am off - my helper is sick so I can do bees this afternoon. I was considering lifting the top box off each hive, pulling any fall honey I might need (typically I pull about 2 frames a year for my daughter in the fall, when it's ragweed/goldenrod honey), putting the spacer between top and bottom box, and using a nice big window for a lid to see what's going on. Shove a towel across the front door and another where the sticky board goes in my screened bottom board, and treating with OAV to see what happens. Maybe using a paper sticky under the screen or over it to get an accurate mite drop. What do you think?
You should look at the OCV. If your a hobby bee keeper there is no other vaporizer that is more advanced by design than the OCV. It uses technology from the 1600's boilers and 1800's locomotives. The combination of materials of using copper along with stainless steel. Actually direct and guide the heat to precisely where it needs to go.
The most advanced by design vaporizer in it's class in the world.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I am not able to buy any new equipment today, thank you for the suggestions though. I run a business that is basically luxury - service ponds. If money is tight I am the first provider not called and covid has been rough. I don't anticipate going up from 2 hives until I go up from 1/3 acre in city limits and that is probably 3 years off, so I have shed full of boxes and brand new frames and plenty of oa and and a not fancy varrox. I do have some of the corrugated plastic, but the ones under the screened board really need replaced and I don't know if I have NEW corrugated to put in. I do have some watercolor paper I could slip in as long as I treat from mid-stack or top and don't start a fire with it. I'm probably going over the screen on one hive, it's been a while since I saw the bottom board on it, probably full of dead bees.
 

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Yup, a paper, instead of a plastic board should work fine.

New, improved models of vaporizers are more efficient, but I still use a classic wand type I bought at $80, six years ago.

I do not know how much capped brood your bees still have, but if I start weekly OAV now (near Seattle, Zone 8), >3 applications will be needed to bring mites down to satisfactory levels.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I don't know how much capped brood they have either. It will be an adventure. But first I have to move the koi out of the pond next to the bees. Doing that now. I think I spent $80 on my wand
 
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If unable to purchase a band heater, then up the dose to 4 - 6 grams. Studies have shown even higher doses than that have benefitted bees.

Do it on the warmest possible day.

Keep your fingers crossed.

Seal off all openings, but give them a top vent while you do it.

all this might help - but don't skimp on the dose whatever you do. More is better with those ones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'm treating from top or middle, will be 70 here saturday and sunday. I have to work saturday morning. I MIGHT get home in time to treat them tomorrow but high is only 62.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Texas is a confusing place to be a bee, I suspect. Does that affect OAV dosage?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
If unable to purchase a band heater, then up the dose to 4 - 6 grams. Studies have shown even higher doses than that have benefitted bees.
I haven't had an issue with a modest dose of about 1.5 grams. (I think, need to check my notes). Granted I don't take my bees to the almonds or live next door to someone who does. I also would like to see the studies showing a benefit with a higher dose.
 

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Thanks. Haven't watched the video but isn't the study showing that the higher doses are required to kill more mites in bigger more populous colonies? Is the "benefit" that more mites are killed? I guess I took the benefit to mean direct benefit.
 

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I wonder if the increase dose just takes longer to be tracked out or neutralized and extends the period of killing effectiveness. Randy's charts suggest killing power goes down quickly beyond 3 days after a treatment. It would be interesting to chart this with both one gram and four gram doses. I think Oldtimer has commented that in NZ where they have no broodless periods and heavy mite problems that multiple treatments at 2 or 3 day intervals is necessary otherwise you are only kidding yourself and irritating the mites a bit.
 

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Large doses do not seem to make a noticable difference in mite drops over time. When I was mite bombed by my neighbor down the road, I was doing it once every 2 or 3 days, and I got a big drop on the 1st day every time even with megadoses of 4g+ per box. I saw mites drop a bit after the first 24 hours day, but nothing worth noting.

So it's been looked at - makes no difference. I did successfully burn some brood though at those frequent high doses.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Large doses do not seem to make a noticable difference in mite drops over time. When I was mite bombed by my neighbor down the road, I was doing it once every 2 or 3 days, and I got a big drop on the 1st day every time even with megadoses of 4g+ per box. I saw mites drop a bit after the first 24 hours day, but nothing worth noting.

So it's been looked at - makes no difference. I did successfully burn some brood though at those frequent high doses.
That's what I was concerned about
 

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I was using really high doses upwards of 4g/box - when I did that once ever 2-3 days I did find some evidence of open brood that had suffered.

Burned= acidified damaged by too much OA.

Again - I was using very high doses to see if it'd help with the mite bomb.

The other question is what about big doses infrequently? The concept was that residual OA might help kill mites. However, I have not seen much evidence of increased residual mite drops even with huge doses.

Cameron Jack has done grounbreaking research on this subject - I hope that continues.
 
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