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Author Topic: Varroa Mite Control?  (Read 7108 times)
T Beek
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« Reply #20 on: June 24, 2011, 05:08:00 AM »

Dumping powdered sugar on our bees was just the latest method being touted as the varroa cure-all.  Human Desperation/intervention causes great harm in most cases.  Most research shows that dumping sugar on top of your bees does little to control mites and may cause bees lots of grief instead, just what they need, heh?

thomas
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indypartridge
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« Reply #21 on: June 24, 2011, 06:57:13 AM »

Dumping powdered sugar on our bees was just the latest method being touted as the varroa cure-all.  
Never thought of it as a "cure-all", just as one part of an overall IPM strategy. And, I agree, just going out and dumping some powdered sugar in a hive isn't an effective treatment - it has to be done regularly, over several weeks, to have any effect.

I also believe it's important to remember that treatment doesn't have to be an "either/or" proposition, but rather it's about making choices along a scale of options, with "doing nothing" at one end, and serious chemicals such as fluvalvinate and cuomophos (Apistan/Checkmite) at the other. In between there are options such as oxalic acid, thymol (Apiguard), MAQS, Hopguard, sucrocide, etc.

Quote from: Finski
Look at you wife's chemical store in bathroom  and you lick her like a mad.  - such is life!
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T Beek
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« Reply #22 on: June 24, 2011, 07:24:31 AM »

QUOTE;  "There are a few rules of thumb that are useful guides.  One is that when you are confronted with some problem in the apiary and you do not know what to do, then do nothing.  Matters are seldom made worse by doing nothing and are often made worse by inept intervention."  Richard Taylor

(Got that hanging in plain site so I can see it every day)

thomas
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snmyork
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« Reply #23 on: June 24, 2011, 09:59:46 AM »

Since we do not know the full reasons for ccd and many have said that chemicals in the hive is a reason. I wanted to know my best options and how to treat for them. Also I do not have the biggest budget for the bees (like none). Over the past four years I have lost 5 hives due to many reasons and I do not want to loose these.
Thanks for help.
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T Beek
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« Reply #24 on: June 24, 2011, 10:29:57 AM »

As has been said by many in many different ways, the best method to control mites is to "keep your broodnests open" (KYBO).  Study it, practice it, perfect it (if perfecting is even possible).  It helps interupt the mite/bee cycle, minimizes swarming and gives the bees something else to do, for you Smiley making more bees.

thomas
« Last Edit: June 24, 2011, 11:52:14 AM by T Beek » Logged

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caticind
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« Reply #25 on: June 24, 2011, 11:36:27 AM »

Knowing that most varroa stay hidden in cells, I can see how your point makes perfect sense, because the powdered sugar coats the bees and varroa are removed during cleaning. If this is the case, then why are so many beekeepers using this method?


Because one does not use powdered sugar at just any time, but instead when the hive is brood-less.  Either taking advantage of queens which pause laying during a dearth, or doing a small split out with the queen so most of the hive is queenless.  When there are no larvae and no capped cells, female mites must have something to feed on, so they are forced onto the adult bees.  Then powdered sugar dusting is used to induce grooming, knocking a much larger percentage of mites out of the hive.

Although a couple of studies have "shown" powdered sugar ineffective, they have not been done properly.  Of course dusting a queenright colony full of capped brood is not effective!  Most of the mites are hiding away where nothing, not even oxalic acid, can touch them.  Of course dusting on a solid bottom board is not effective!  Mites fall to the bottom, then climb back on to the next bee that passes.  

Powdered sugar does not kill mites, and it is not a long term solution to varroa any more than organic acid or organophosphates.  In the long run the only useful method of control is to select for bees that can resist and survive mites and the diseases they vector.

But for a hobbyist without the resources to take the crushing losses that follow when treatment stops, sugar dusting is a cheap, low-tech method of varroa control that can help hives survive.  For what it's worth, sugar dusting has been repeatedly demonstrated in studies not to harm the bees and not to induce resistance (since it's mechanical and not chemical in it's mode of action).  Whereas oxalic acid weakens colonies somewhat and treated colonies have the same winter failure rate as control colonies (from Nanetti 2003).

http://scientificbeekeeping.com/powdered-sugar-dusting—sweet-and-safe-but-does-it-really-work-part-3/

Here's part 3 of a research review of sugar dusting.  Not well organized, but about 2/3 of the way down there is an interesting note that one of the authors in the FL study which "debunked" sugar dusting responded to a letter by saying that while sugar dusting was ineffective "within the parameters of the study" (which dusted queenright colonies with capped brood), that she has seen it work in the real world and would recommend continuing to use it as part of IPM methods until "the science catches up".

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FRAMEshift
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« Reply #26 on: June 24, 2011, 01:34:07 PM »

the best method to control mites is to "keep your broodnests open" (KYBO).  Study it, practice it, perfect it (if perfecting is even possible).  It helps interupt the mite/bee cycle, minimizes swarming and gives the bees something else to do, for you Smiley making more bees.
thomas

What evidence is there that KYBO has an effect on mites?   It certainly does help suppress swarming and yes, it helps make more bees.  But making more bees also makes more mites, since they need open brood for their own reproductive cycle.  I don't remember ever reading anything about opening of the brood nest in regard to mite control and I can't see what the possible mechanism would be.

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danno
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« Reply #27 on: June 24, 2011, 03:01:02 PM »

I just checked Dadant's website and

Available only to the following states: California, Georgia, Hawaii, Missouri,  North Carolina, Ohio and Washington.


Not available in Florida.

Larry

Brushy Mountain does not have that restriction.  I'm not even sure why Dadant has it, because it is approved by the USDA.  Another brand name is SucraShield by Natural Forces LLC.  Can't post a URL yet.  try www dot naturalforcesllc dot com

all pesticides have to be registered by the dept of Ag first.   They then need state registration before they can be sold in that state.  Brushy mountain cannot ship to states that haven't approved it.  Maine and New Mexico are still in the state registration period for quick strips all other 48 have approved them
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T Beek
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« Reply #28 on: June 24, 2011, 03:05:13 PM »

My understanding and what seems to keep mites at bay for me (I've NEVER had an issue w/ varroa) is the interuption of the cycle through persistent opening of broodnest.  (or perhaps its all the Hops we grow Undecided).

thomas
« Last Edit: June 25, 2011, 07:10:03 AM by T Beek » Logged

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Finski
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« Reply #29 on: June 24, 2011, 04:43:16 PM »

.
If you have not varroa problems, it means not that others have either.

Only sick needs healing said Jesus.


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FRAMEshift
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« Reply #30 on: June 24, 2011, 06:53:14 PM »


Only sick needs healing said Jesus.

So Finski, you talk to Jesus AND the bees?   grin
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jtow
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« Reply #31 on: June 26, 2011, 06:58:04 PM »

This recipe from a woman in our bee club that uses EO's and sugar dusting on her bees, bees are healthy and overwinter well. She is well respected by members of our bee club.

1.   GARLIC/POWDERED SUGAR  for  VARRO MITES(use only if count is over 60/day)

Put  ½ lb(2 CUPS) sugar in blender.  Grind until fine.  DO NOT use powdered sugar with additives.  Add 1oz granulated garlic powder to sugar in blender and grind again. DO NOT use garlic salt.  I use a small hand sifter to dust each side of the frames.

NOTE:  Use only when warranted by mite count greater than (60/day) as this can kill some larvae.  Best time is when brood rearing has shut down. 

My .02 cents as well.
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Finski
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« Reply #32 on: June 26, 2011, 10:43:36 PM »

.
 Yes, old Transylvanic method against blood suckers.

A Finish recipe is:

one bottle vodga
20 crushed carlic or was it claws?
Let it stay 9 months

when you go to nurse bees, take a god boost from it.
When you respire a while into the hive, all mites, under cappings incluced,
will be dead. Sometimes bees abscond too but they will come back.
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cam
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« Reply #33 on: June 27, 2011, 06:40:39 AM »

Dave Miksa also recommended this for mites. His formula was similar but he recommended that this formula be stirred with a mixer for about 30 minutes for it to be effective. Haven't tried it so can't recommend.

This recipe from a woman in our bee club that uses EO's and sugar dusting on her bees, bees are healthy and overwinter well. She is well respected by members of our bee club.

1.   GARLIC/POWDERED SUGAR  for  VARRO MITES(use only if count is over 60/day)

Put  ½ lb(2 CUPS) sugar in blender.  Grind until fine.  DO NOT use powdered sugar with additives.  Add 1oz granulated garlic powder to sugar in blender and grind again. DO NOT use garlic salt.  I use a small hand sifter to dust each side of the frames.

NOTE:  Use only when warranted by mite count greater than (60/day) as this can kill some larvae.  Best time is when brood rearing has shut down. 

My .02 cents as well.

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Finski
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« Reply #34 on: June 27, 2011, 06:44:28 PM »

.
Jtow writes that use if mite count is 60 drops per 24 hours. Varroa calulator tells that then the hive has 2400 mites. 
1000 mites is  critical number according specialists.
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caticind
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« Reply #35 on: June 28, 2011, 12:42:56 PM »

Dave Miksa also recommended this for mites. His formula was similar but he recommended that this formula be stirred with a mixer for about 30 minutes for it to be effective. Haven't tried it so can't recommend.

This recipe from a woman in our bee club that uses EO's and sugar dusting on her bees, bees are healthy and overwinter well. She is well respected by members of our bee club.

1.   GARLIC/POWDERED SUGAR  for  VARRO MITES(use only if count is over 60/day)

Put  ½ lb(2 CUPS) sugar in blender.  Grind until fine.  DO NOT use powdered sugar with additives.  Add 1oz granulated garlic powder to sugar in blender and grind again. DO NOT use garlic salt.  I use a small hand sifter to dust each side of the frames.

NOTE:  Use only when warranted by mite count greater than (60/day) as this can kill some larvae.  Best time is when brood rearing has shut down. 

My .02 cents as well.


What on earth is the garlic supposed to do?  I could see, maybe, it being an anti-microbial, but I don't think I buy it as a miticide. 

Unless the mites are related to a different species of blood-sucker!   shocked

It'll probably work due to the powdered sugar being used during broodless periods, but I'm not sure the garlic adds anything.
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The bees would be no help; they would tumble over each other like golden babies and thrum wordlessly on the subjects of queens and sex and pollen-gluey feet. -Palimpsest
joebrown
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« Reply #36 on: June 28, 2011, 09:27:54 PM »

I have heard about the garlic trick as well, but no one has ever told me why they use it.
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #37 on: June 29, 2011, 11:11:52 PM »

In response to garlic, the use of it is pretty much the same as for using sugar shakes.  For mite control the treatment I've found is no treatment, let the bees firgure it out.  It takes about 6-8 years to get your bees to the point that they can survive even with a moderate mite load, and learn how to control the mite load so it never gets larger than moderate.

But if you like treatments garlic is as good as powdered sugar, flour, cornstarch, and other finely ground powders.
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Finski
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« Reply #38 on: June 29, 2011, 11:32:53 PM »

.
I wonder what a beginner gets from this kind of discussion.

Jerk or not, but do you know better advices to kill beginners' hives ?
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T Beek
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« Reply #39 on: June 30, 2011, 06:38:12 AM »

Yet again, Brian D Bray makes the most sense without condeming others attempts and efforts. 

(Intelligent/meaningful) Discussion is how some folks learn Finski, hopefully you'll one day realize that it works even better than slamming or calling others stupid.

thomas
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