How to know when to treat for varroa

Discussion in 'Pests and Diseases' started by Gypsi, Oct 10, 2015.

  1. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    2 of my original queens were VSH, one a Flyman queen and one from Beeweavers. The Flyman queen was superceded last spring, and presently that hive is being run by one of her granddaughters. (I do not mark my queens). My 3rd hive is a swarm that seems both gentle and productive but I have no idea if they are hygenic.

    So I put sticky boards in with oil on them a couple of weeks ago and I have dusted with powdered sugar a couple of times, really not seeing more than 20 mites in a drop time of a week.

    so how do I know it is time to treat? LOTS of drone brood, relative to worker brood in the flyman granddaughter's hive. I removed some and started popping open capped brood, at least one mite per larvae.

    My Varrocleaner came last week, still need to pick up oxalic acid locally. I removed all the drone brood I could find from that hive. The swarm hive had a couple of frames of worker brood total, not much uncapped, I don't think I saw any drone brood or if I did just a few cells.

    The Beeweaver hive has a deep and 2 mediums, it was getting late. Since I know I have to buy the acid anyway, I figure I will treat the other 2 while I go through the BW hive and see what the situation looks like. I have not seen any DWV or K wing in the apiary this year.
     
  2. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    The lawnmower battery had other plans for my treatment schedule. I use it because it is lighter weight and I can usually charge it enough on the solar panel on my roof. Ahem. Battery charged 2 days before the Tuesday morning treatment of my swarm hive, I had done a trial run first and made sure it did heat up. To get stuff fully burned / evaporated I had to bring a battery charger out and boost the battery at the end, took 6 minutes. That was Tuesday MORNING

    so Tuesday evening (doing bookkeeping in the middle) I try to do hive 2, the granddaughter vsh hive with all the mites and the battery didn't have enough charge and I ticked them off. They appear to have gotten a bit hotter in this last queen change. So I went and got a new battery and aimed for Wednesday

    Wednesday morning hive 2, the granddaughter hive did indeed still remember me. I am wearing a ventilated suit and boots and good gloves for all of this, taxes must be filed and benadryl is not a plus. I did manage to get a nice 3 minute burn of the oa, but half the bees were outside the hive after the first minute. Nothing gets bookkeeping done like weather in the 90's and stalking bees.
    So last night I went out to try to do the 3rd hive, beeweavers, which I have not opened but I am assuming if the other 2 have mites they probably do, and by the time I got the dogs settled, the oa in the pan of the burner, battery topped off (solar was still charging but won't give me a level on the battery) it was dark and they were still on the front porch fanning. I did change the entrance reducer on this hive and the little hot one making blocks 3 inches to each side and leaving a nice snug 8 inch opening in the middle. So I set the oa pan under something so it wouldn't get damp and went out this morning, with a hot battery 3 minutes is just perfect. and I forgot to tape off the lid, but hey, that top box is honey stores anyway (1 deep 2 medium).

    Retreat in 6 days. Mite drop on hive 3 done Tuesday was a good solid 200 mites. Hive 2 done yesterday morning had dropped maybe 50, there are also just not that many bees, they need down to a single box or in a stacked nuc. Need to pick up moth crystals to store the comb but they are not getting their size reduction til taxes done.

    I think this morning's treatment on hive 1 went fairly well, and the areas I didn't tape were probably heavily propolized, I hadn't opened the hive in 3 weeks or so.

    now back to bookkeeping.
     

  3. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Oh shoot it was October when I did my first treatment. Well I did a 2nd one on hive 1 today. Hope I didn't use too much oxalic acid. But 20 or 30 bees were outside the hive and I know they didn't get treated, don't see any bodies being removed. I filled the VarroaCleaner dish, took about 3 of the little spoons of Ace Hardware Wood Bleach