So if I treated this past FALL with OAV when should I be testing the mite loads? I am guessing after the honey flow when the hives are loaded with bees . Seems like testing in the spring is not needed .
In that situation I think I might just haul open and examine some drone brood. That is about where I expect to be come spring. If no mites are showing in the drone brood I think you are close to home free. Your bees must be starting to brood aren't they?
For every mite you can knock down in the spring, that prevents multiple numbers of mites later in the year, because of their reproduction rate. Perhaps treating in the spring will help reduce the so very large numbers of mites in the late summer and fall. Granted, treating will or may be needed in the late summer/fall also, but perhaps the honey production through spring and summer would be increased with spring treatments as well. I'm not advocating treating or not treating, I'm just saying that if you are one to treat, perhaps both spring and fall treating would give better honey production in the spring and summer, as well as hive over wintering success.
Yes they are I had 2 dead outs and they both had a little brood. So i am sure there starting the make some brood.
I figured I'd test them right before I slap the honey supers on that way if I need to treat them there will be no honey supers on just brood chambers. I can't wait to be in my hives. Got 10in new snow last night.
Ray, very good points.
What I would like to add, for those who use OAV, is that typically the bees seem to stay well ahead of the mites during spring build up and into the flow. Not always, but it's fairly reliable if you have decent stock. The colony getting into trouble seems to be during the dearth in late summer, when brood rearing slows way down and mite loads are at their highest. For the OAV user that is the normal time period to do 3 treatments a week apart to knock down a high percentage of the mites. Then, a clean up treatment when broodless in early winter.
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