I'm not basing anything on Berry, although it's nice to see a controlled study and someone finding out some of the things I have said for years.
I did not find, and have never said that once bees are on smallcell, it's the answer to mites. I have always, as well as many others, suggested that perhaps other factors of survivability based on changing over to clean comb, selecting from survivors after losing bees through the first couple years of regression, as well as other items, may be at play.
Through my own testing, I can not claim or suggest to others that smallcell is the answer to mites. I have just as many problems with mites in all my hives as one type or another. That being said, all my hives are on non-treated survivor stock and I have good success from that fact alone.
I do much testing, and just participate in research when I can. I just got back the first part of a research study being conducted through Penn State and a laboratory research team out of Belgium.
Two hives randomly tested, (Random meaning a yard that I did not have registered, and the inspector through a so-called "friend" just happened to "find" the yard and conducted the research without me being present...which has me steamed!)
Anyways, the first stage of the results were forwarded to me. In two random colonies selected, this is what they found... (conducted in late September)
Hive one... v-mites per 100___0.92 found, with a study average of 11.4 per 100 bees
nosema spores____0.52 million, with a study average of .93
t-mites___________ none found
Hive two...v-mites per 100___6.6
t-mites found_____ none found
The averages of 11.4 v-mites, .93 (millions per bee) nosema spores (1 million considered treatment threshhold), and 8% t-mites, were based on random hives with many being treated.
My hives were not treated, and based on them being three year old hives, are far less than the average treated hives being looked at. these are full size hives, on regular comb, and have not lost a hive from this yard yet in three years. 10 hives in the yard