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I tried to post in the disease and pests section but kept getting logged out? I'm a fairly new beekeeper and have never worried about varroa mites. I did an inspection today on one of my hives and noticed bees with partial wings and brood that was dead in the cells. Checked for mites and had 36 in 300 bees, 12%. I have researched this but wanted your all's opinion of what to do?
Thanks
 

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I think our Canadian Agriculture literature suggests 1% mite levels as the action level. Deformed wings and crawling bees showing up is probably getting close to the point of no return. It certainly would be in colder climates.
 

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I would throw in some Apivar strips and immediately start OAV treatments as frequently as you can for a 28 day period.

That may seem extreme, but you have a pretty extreme situation. Just know that there is still a good chance you will lose the colony.
 

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Yes, as other have said, don't delay - start with some treatment method(s) now to have a shot at saving them.
 

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I'm a fairly new beekeeper and have never worried about varroa mites.
How new?

If you have been around long enough to know you have bees that can deal with varroa, you could choose to eliminate this hive to just keep the varroa resistant genetics.

But if you are less than say, 2 years in, you really don't know if maybe all your bees could collapse with varroa, and therefore, killing the varroa will be the safest option. As per Psm1212, Apivar strips are reliable and easy.
 

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I would throw in some Apivar strips and immediately start OAV treatments as frequently as you can for a 28 day period.

That may seem extreme, but you have a pretty extreme situation. Just know that there is still a good chance you will lose the colony.
I agree, apivar and OAV. 5 rounds of OAV in my opinion at 4 day intervals. Keep in mind if you have a 12% wash you have a much higher count once all the capped brood emerges. Once the OA is done I would check with another wash. (wait a week after last OAV to do wash) Also if the bees need it feed them healthy bees can withstand more stress than hungry bees. If you don't have OAV capabilities then doing an accurate dose of Oxalic acid dribble will work. When the mite levels are high and there is plenty of brood APivar is too slow to kill mites by itself.
 

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you could choose to eliminate this hive to just keep the varroa resistant genetics..
I'd just let them go under and move on.
Not worth the effort.
Especially if the other hives are standing anyway.
 

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APivar is too slow to kill mites by itself.
This seems to be a common opinion yet it doesn’t fit my experience. I’ve had hives drop over a thousand mites during the first week with Apivar. And by the end of three weeks the drops slowed to a handful. Over 3 thousand mites total and all but a few hundred in the first three weeks.
 

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Treat all your hives ASAP! If there isn't much sealed brood, pull the sealed brood and freeze it. Treating the hive with OAV after you pull the brood will decimate the mites. Then, feed them heavily so they can build back up.
 

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GregV, where do you think those mites will end up when the hive starts collapsing, at best in the ops other hives or at worst in some unsuspecting beekeepers hives down the road somewhere.
 

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This seems to be a common opinion yet it doesn’t fit my experience. I’ve had hives drop over a thousand mites during the first week with Apivar. And by the end of three weeks the drops slowed to a handful. Over 3 thousand mites total and all but a few hundred in the first three weeks.
That is an interesting observation Dan. I would have thought that since Apivar was a contact miticide and you had only two strips per brood box, it would would take several days if not weeks for each bee to come into contact with the strip Whereas OAV, if done late in the afternoon or early in the morning, would instantly come into contact with most bees within seconds. I have never used a drop board with Apivar, so I have never seen this myself.

Your post made me go look on Apivar's website. The bees actually do not have to come into direct contact with the Apivar strip. The miticide is spread from bee to bee throughout the colony. I have read that a queen's QMP can be spread to virtually every bee within a colony within 20 minutes (I think I read that. Maybe I dreamed it). I am sure QMP spreads at a different rate than miticide, however, I can see how Apivar might act faster than I had originally believed.
 

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I would have thought that since Apivar was a contact miticide and you had only two strips per brood box, it would would take several days if not weeks for each bee to come into contact with the strip Whereas OAV, if done late in the afternoon or early in the morning, would instantly come into contact with most bees within seconds.
When I first decided to try Apivar a few years ago I had heard some anecdotal reports of resistance. So the first few applications I did were in hives with screened bottoms….I only have a few of those. I followed them daily to be sure I could depend on the Apivar to work.
I think the 6 to 8 week application period misleads many folks. They suppose that is how long it takes to be effective. All I can say is that it was much faster and better than I expected.
Funny that you mention the immediate exposure to all of the bees with oav. I did pretty much the same thing when I first used oav. In spite of that exposure it was 4 to 6 days before I began to see significant drops. I don’t place any significance to that but was a bit surprised at the delay.
 

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This seems to be a common opinion yet it doesn’t fit my experience. I’ve had hives drop over a thousand mites during the first week with Apivar. And by the end of three weeks the drops slowed to a handful. Over 3 thousand mites total and all but a few hundred in the first three weeks.
When colonies have alot of brood it seems to take the apivar a good bit to knock them back from what I have observed using washes. I believe that is why they are suggested to be used over 2 brood cycles. When the colony has little to no brood they probably work quickly. You may be right, it just hasn't been my experience after applying apivar after pulling supers.
 

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it just hasn't been my experience after applying apivar after pulling supers.
This was the reason I was testing Apivar in the first place. I needed something that I could apply when removing my honey supers in June and July….when the daytime temps were running well into the nineties. The hives were still loaded with brood and the overall populations big.
Apivar is now my ‘go to’ treatment for that period.
I shift to Apiguard when the temperatures moderate.
 

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Apivar kills about 40% of the mites in the first week and 99% kill over the full treatment period. I like using Apivar in the fall, I put it on at the September equinox and take it off after Halloween at the best weather opportunity, I like that I don't have to be exact in the timing. However Apivar follows the old addage that when it comes to cheap, easy and good you can pick any two but you can't pick all three. Apivar is very easy and it is very good. OAV is a lot cheaper (once you get past the vaporizer), but with OAV you pick cheap and good.
 
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