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Author Topic: How often can I treat for varroa mites with powdered sugar?  (Read 2645 times)
seabees
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« on: April 27, 2011, 05:33:27 PM »

I am in my second season backyard beekeeping. My one hive made it through winter full of bees and I am now in the process of trying to make a second hive with the "simulated emergency method". I don't really know what I am doing but I read a lot. I am following as much  of what Michael Bush advises as possible, which means 10 frames (or is there 11), 4.9mm  wax foundation, mixed with frames which only have a strip of foundation, top entrance,no chemicals, only feed them honey. Anyhow so far, so good. I have varroa mites and have been dusting them with sugar. I have a screened bottomed board and I count the mites every day to make sure there is a manageable amount. I make my own powdered sugar and dust them a lot. I am assuming that this is harmless and I dust them frequently. Is that okay?
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Debbie
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« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2011, 07:53:26 PM »

As long as you are making your own powdered sugar, I don't think it would hurt to dust them as much as you want.  Once a week or more often.
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Adrian
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« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2011, 08:33:05 AM »

How does one make their own powdered sugar?
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Adrian
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« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2011, 09:42:02 AM »

Blender + regular sugar

Scott
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"In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person's becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American...There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag...We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language...And we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people."

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Adrian
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« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2011, 11:08:45 AM »

okay, thanks. I do not mean to be a pain, I really just do not know. Can you tell me why that is better than just purchasing powdered sugar?

Thank YOU!
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Adrian
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« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2011, 11:34:28 AM »

Regular powdered sugar is cut with corn starch to keep it from clumping. It is thought that corn starch dries out the larvae.

Scott
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"In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person's becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American...There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag...We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language...And we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people."

Theodore Roosevelt 1907
Adrian
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« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2011, 01:58:50 PM »

wow....very interesting....thank you so much. In addition, most of the corn in the US is a GMO product. I did not know powered sugar had that in it but I happen to believe the GMO products are also responsible in part for CCD and other negative effects we are seeing in the production of our food. Thanks again..this is a great resource and forum....very important in this day and time.
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Adrian
seabees
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« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2011, 10:33:10 PM »

Thanks ,  I will treat with powdered sugar often then. Debbie
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Debbie
tillie
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« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2011, 10:55:23 PM »

The talks I've heard on using powdered sugar advocate doing it once every three weeks.  Since worker brood emerges in 21 days, you manage to get powdered sugar on all of the workers eventually that way.

Jennifer Berry's research shows that powdered sugar is really only effective done in Jan, Feb, March before the spring buildup.  She squirts it in from the bottom.  I bought a "dustructor" from Brushy Mountain this year which does the from-the-bottom dusting which means that you can do it, at least in southern winters, without opening the hive in less than 60 degree weather.

Linda T in Atlanta
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woodhinge
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« Reply #9 on: September 07, 2011, 08:23:52 AM »

Respectfully,  It seems strange to me that the vast number of who use 10x powdered sugar during August/September are all wrong. If research proves this treatment inadequate, as suggested by Linda T. in her comment about Jennifer Berry's research, then why is this information not shouted all over the place? Secondly, Linda, you are a Master Beekeeper, I've even donated to your website, so I'd be interested in exact fact finding (from Ms. Berry):  Have you found her research accurate and correct?
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Poppi
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« Reply #10 on: September 07, 2011, 03:58:34 PM »

Also If I'm not mistaken...  the powdered sugar "treatment" is supposed to be done on the same day, once a week for three weeks...  to catch all the new brood after they have emerged.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2011, 09:55:59 PM »

I haven't used it, but have seen it done.  The guy I know who swears by it, mixes the powdered sugar with garlic powder.  My guess is if the garlic helps (and I don't know if it does) it would be because it sets off more grooming because of the odor...
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Michael Bush
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tillie
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« Reply #12 on: September 12, 2011, 01:29:27 PM »

I just came from GBA where Keith Delaplane presented the results of Jennifer Berry's research.  Jennifer's thought was to test powdered sugar at a break in the brood cycle such as happens in the winter.  Keith said that they did three different comparisons - they compared starting powdered sugar in January vs. March, they compared every other month treatment with treatment = four applications three days apart to treating for the whole year, every two weeks; and they compared dusting from below vs using a flour sifter from above.

They found healthier bees with less mite loads in the hives with the following:

  • Best to start in January over March
  • Best to treat every other month
  • Best to blow dust into the hive from below rather than dust with a sifter from above - partly because you are not opening the hive in January and partly because it simply seemed to get onto the bees better.

Just thought you all would like to know.

Linda T in Atlanta
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tillie
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« Reply #13 on: September 12, 2011, 01:32:26 PM »

PS doesn't this thread need to be moved to a different part of the forum - it isn't an introduction of a new beekeeper topic?
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