I lost 2 to starvation and am kicking myself for not catching the robbing situation earlier last summer.
Those 2, however, first created a 3rd split hive, which is thriving. It overwintered here in WI and has never shown signs of mites or other junk.
I fed this hive with sugar and syrup, but I've never used anything else at all in the hives. They are in topbars and built their own comb. They had enough stored to overwinter and are doing their thing these first warm days of nearly-spring! I am cautiously optimistic.
If organic beekeeping is anything like organic farming, there are lots and lots of naysayers among the conventional folks. However, you can always find people who are doing organic, doing it well and have done so for a long time. It just needs to be done differently.
I hope I find that path in beekeeping and also (fawningly) GREATLY appreciate Michael Bush's generous contributions to that pool of knowledge. Michael, I seriously didn't know if I could do beekeeping, the treatments, costs and everything were so overwhelming. Then, I found your website :) Here's to hopefully (fingers crossed) many, many years of treatment-free beekeeping and luscious honeycomb. :D