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Author Topic: Oxalic acid and tracheal mites  (Read 7401 times)
qa33010
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« on: October 06, 2005, 05:05:20 AM »

I didn't see this on any searches.  Does oxalic acid have any effect on tracheal mites?

Thamks!

 David
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« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2005, 05:40:56 AM »

Never mind I found it on another site.  Thanks all!
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« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2006, 10:22:08 AM »

qa33010; What did you find out ?...I'd like to know as well........
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« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2006, 11:54:16 AM »

He found out that oxalic acid.....
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qa33010
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« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2006, 12:28:54 AM »

Here is part of it.  Now I need to go back and check my notes.  This is an excerpt from Michael Bush on BeeSource when he was discussing what treatments he has and has not used (I'm going to check his new and improved site next before I dive into my notes) hope you don't mind Michael...

Tracheal Mites
Tracheal mites (Acarapis woodi) are too small to see with the naked eye. If you want to check for them you need a microscope. Not a really powerful one, but you still need one. You’re not looking to see the details of a cell, just a creature that is quite small. Tracheal mites reproduce in young bees 1 to 2 days old. A common control for them is a grease patty (sugar and cooking grease mixed to make a patty) because it masks the smell that the tracheal mites use to find a young bee. If they can’t find young bees they can’t reproduce. Menthol is commonly used to kill the Tracheal mites. FGMO and (by some accounts) Oxalic acid will also kill them. Breeding for resistance and small cell are also useful. The theory on the small cell helping is that the spiracles (the openings into the trachea) that the bees breathe through are smaller and the mites can’t get in. More research is needed on this subject. But basically, I just use small cell and they don’t seem to be a problem.
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Everyone said it couldn't be done. But he with a chuckle replied, "I won't be one to say it is so, until I give it a try."  So he buckled right in with a trace of a grin.  If he had a worry he hid it and he started to sing as he tackled that thing that couldn't be done, and he did it.  (unknown)
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« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2006, 07:20:42 AM »

As I said.  "by some accounts".  I'm still interested in a definitive study that says that Oxalic acid vapor DOES kill tracheal mites.  Some say it does and it's hard to imagine that it wouldn't.
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« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2006, 05:57:14 AM »

Menthol being another treatment for trachea mites who has tried it?  I'm experimenting with growing mint in my bee yard.  I have a creek overflowing with it and a transplant was easy.  It's hardy and spreads like a weed but since mint contains a natural menthol I thought it worth a try.
I occassionally break off a sprig and lay on top the top frames.
The bees I have are either trachea mite resistant or the mint along the creek was already working.
Some others might want to try mint and see what happens as I don't think my experiment is really valid due to the existing close proximity of the mint to the hives.
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« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2006, 03:15:03 PM »

>Menthol being another treatment for trachea mites who has tried it?

Not I.
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« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2006, 02:41:44 AM »

Parallel discusion on general topics entitled Varroa mites and rhubard?
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« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2006, 09:47:25 AM »

As far as tracheal mites go formic acid controls them if properly applied. Formic acid is a naturally occuring element in the insect world,and is used by the organic beekeepers. I really believe in it, as it packs a one-two punch--varroa and tracheal knockdown.
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« Reply #10 on: October 11, 2006, 11:23:17 AM »

Here I can only get Oxalic acid in solid powder form, so how can I use it to kill mite? Understand from a chemist that this acid does not vapor right?
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« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2006, 11:43:20 AM »

Quote from: limyw
Here I can only get Oxalic acid in solid powder form, so how can I use it to kill mite? Understand from a chemist that this acid does not vapor right?


trickle (drip) or vaporize

http://www.algonet.se/~beeman/research/oxalic/oxalic-0-nf.htm
http://www.algonet.se/~beeman/research/oxalic/oxalic-1-nf.htm

I vaporize with the JB600 this with great success.
http://www.members.shaw.ca/orioleln/Vaporizer.htm
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« Reply #12 on: November 02, 2006, 09:31:55 AM »

"Understand from a chemist that this acid does not vapor right?"

Robo.. doing a Google search on "Heating Oxalic acid".. you'll come across that the rapid heating of Oxalic acid produces Formic Acid.  Finman has stated this also. 

But.. I also found..

"A good yield of formic acid cannot be obtained by merely heating oxalic acid, as a certain portion of the oxalic acid sublimes unchanged. The oxalic acid is therefore heated with glycerol when carbon dioxide and glyceryl monoformate are obtained, and the latter when boiled with water yields formic acid and glycerol"
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« Reply #13 on: November 02, 2006, 10:07:19 AM »

Look up formic acid on the internet, particularly a site "Mite-Gone".  This is an amazing product that is naturally found in nature, as is oxalic acid.  With formic acid (if done correctly) has no ill effects on bees.  It is probably one of the best ways to combat some bee problems.  You will see that it combats Varroa mites, tracheal mites, chalkbrood, wax moth problems and so on.  It is worth looking into it and finding out if this is a product that you would like to use.  There is a myriad of information on the internet and many suppliers.  The pads release formic acid fumes, which is heavier than air and sinks to the bottom of the hive, the bees fan to get rid of these fumes and this kills the varroa mite quickly and efficiently.  Search the internet, my best advice, and this is from an unseasoned beekeeper, who is doing her homework.  Oxalic acid is good too, but I think formic acid is easier and activates and deactivates, depending on the bees activities with fanning in the hive.  Meaning, if they are clustering keeping warm, the treatment is on hold, when they get busy and fan, the treatment goes off hold.  If any seasoned beekeepers have a differing opinion, I would love to hear, as I am new mostly (only 2 years keeping bees) and I love advice from good sources.
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« Reply #14 on: November 02, 2006, 11:07:11 AM »

Here is Finnsh concept to handle varroa. We have no problems with that creature any more.

Heating of oxalic acid generates formic adic.

There are 2 parts in handling:

1) killig mites with vapur when bees have brood and outer temperature is high.  Idea is kill mites so that they do not violate wintering bees. Efficiency is 70%.
2) Second and final cure with trickling when all brood have emerged . Efficiency is high because all mites are on bees.

I use only trickling because my mite level is very low in summer.

http://bees.freesuperhost.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1136436349
http://bees.freesuperhost.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1136437131

These methods have generated in Europe and tested to each country that they work. Testing in Finland took 3 years. Our authors are  professionals in beekeping.
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« Reply #15 on: November 02, 2006, 01:30:54 PM »

Robo.. doing a Google search on "Heating Oxalic acid".. you'll come across that the rapid heating of Oxalic acid produces Formic Acid.  Finman has stated this also. 

But.. I also found..

"A good yield of formic acid cannot be obtained by merely heating oxalic acid, as a certain portion of the oxalic acid sublimes unchanged. The oxalic acid is therefore heated with glycerol when carbon dioxide and glyceryl monoformate are obtained, and the latter when boiled with water yields formic acid and glycerol"


I guess that would depend on the definition of "rapid heating".  But hey if that is the case then vaporizing should be the better method.  It should work with capped brood too then, just like formic acid.  Right?

Look up formic acid on the internet, particularly a site "Mite-Gone".  This is an amazing product that is naturally found in nature, as is oxalic acid.  With formic acid (if done correctly) has no ill effects on bees.  It is probably one of the best ways to combat some bee problems.  You will see that it combats Varroa mites, tracheal mites, chalkbrood, wax moth problems and so on.


Cindi - keep in mind your source. Mite-Gone is trying to sell a product, so of course they have nothing but great things to say about it.  Oxi-Clean is a miracle cleaner too, just ask Billy Mays....

Go to the evaporator manfucture website and you'll see their claim "The best , easiest and effectives way to control the Varroa mites."
http://www.members.shaw.ca/orioleln/Vaporizer.htm

That said,  I think oxalic and formic are both effective and it just comes down to person preference.  If everyone liked vanilla, they wouldn't make chocolate.

I find spending 15 minutes once a year vaporizing works best for me.  No mixing or worrying about spilling acid or worrying about the temperature or making a second trip to remove the waste.  Oxalic acid is available locally and is cheap.  So yes I spent a little more up front for the vaporizor, but a $4 container of oxalic acid will last me a decade or more.  Formic acid is regulated and difficult to get here in the US unless you by the pre-packaged stuff at top dollar.

Canada has now approved the use of oxalic acid.  Both liquid and vaporizing. http://www.honeycouncil.ca/users/folder.asp?FolderID=5204
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« Reply #16 on: November 02, 2006, 02:12:25 PM »



I asked the Tech Transfer Specialist from the Ontario Beekeepers' Association re oxalic and tracheal.  She responded by saying that in all of the work she has read, oxalic has no effect on tracheal mites.
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« Reply #17 on: November 02, 2006, 02:47:25 PM »

"I guess that would depend on the definition of "rapid heating".  But hey if that is the case then vaporizing should be the better method.  It should work with capped brood too then, just like formic acid.  Right?"

I agree.. wouldn't that be the best of both worlds.  I wonder how just sprinkling some OA on your smoker fuel would do?  I've been experimenting on using BuckWheat(high in OA) as a smoker fuel..  I did get some serious mite drops(hundreds) on one test.. combined w/ a powder sugar treatment.  The next test was smoking only.. 
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« Reply #18 on: November 02, 2006, 07:50:16 PM »

>She responded by saying that in all of the work she has read, oxalic has no effect on tracheal mites.

If there is any literature to support that I'd like to see it.  I have not been able to find a definitive answer whether it does or does not, but have heard some reports from beekeepers that say it does.

Since I never treat for tracheal mites anyway, and have no problems with them, I couldn't say if the oxalic adic made any difference when I used it several years ago.
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« Reply #19 on: December 08, 2006, 02:25:04 PM »

To my best  knowlegde OX have no effect while Formic have. There are more bennifit in using formic in spring. : It also kills varroa in capped cells. And is not conterminating honey and wax.
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« Reply #20 on: December 08, 2006, 07:32:41 PM »

Of course it would make a big difference if you are TRICKLING or EVAPORATING the oxalic acid.
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« Reply #21 on: December 09, 2006, 05:37:35 AM »

Of course it would make a big difference if you are TRICKLING or EVAPORATING the oxalic acid.


I have tryed both and no! Only formic acid had the effect on thraceal mites. And by the way Evaporating take far to much time. Opening and tricling a hive takes only a few minutes.
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« Reply #22 on: December 10, 2006, 10:22:42 AM »

When I took beekeeping 1 and 2 with an instructor locally, he taught us to use oxalic acid in the spring.  In our area March 1 is when we applied it.  The sugar trickle method.  I trust this advice from my instructor.  He runs about 1,200 hives, has an incredible "love" of his bees, not just a soul that is working his bees for money.  His care and love shines through in everything that he does around his farm, very obvious.  I can only say good things about this man who was born in the Far East and has been in Canada for probably not more than 15 years.  Don't know why I went on about him, but that is what he/we use in spring.  In the fall we use formic acid, beginning of September after the honey is pulled off.  As stated before, formic acid treats many pest of the bees.  i.e., varroa mite, trachael mite, wax moth and chalkbrood.  It does quite a bit.

I had an experience with the actual inventor of the formic acid pad, his name his Bill Ruzick.  He lives in a city that is about 4 hours travel from our home, about 1/2 km from my daughter's house, whom we visit frequently.  Bill is an older man, a retired professor of university.  He travels worldwide extensively (and I mean north, south, east, west) lecturing and teaching about the use of the formic acid treatment for honeybee health issues (and maybe lectures about other topics as well, I don't know).  Right now he is somewhere is Africa I believe.  I had the opportunity to go to his farm in August of this past summer and be taught about how to use formic acid with the bees.  I left his farm feeling somewhat enlightened and have a firm believe in the power of formic acid.  Having only a few hives myself, I use the prefilled pads.  They are attached to the inside wall of the hive, the acid fumes are heavier than air, which drop to the bottom and pool, the bees are irritated by the smell and fan the fumes throughout the hives, killing the varroa and doing good stuff in the hive.   For the larger beekeeper, the prefilled pads would be probably too expensive, the unfilled pads can be filled at the apiary in a very short time and applied.  The cost per hive is very low, maybe 80 cents, I am not sure, but in Canada it is cheap. 

Yes, oxalic acid has been approved for use in Canada, we sometimes take so much longer in Canada for approval for stuff that has been in use in the U.S. for a long time.  We are somewhat behind the times I guess.

Do no take anything I have said as gospel, it is only my opinion on some very serious matters.  I am on a fight with the varroa mite, one day we will have rid ourselves of this pest.

Oh ya, by the way, there is another fellow that lives in a neighbouring community that runs a farm of honeybees too.  I have taken mini courses with him as well.  There has been funding approval for research to be done with breeding of varroa-resistant honeybees.  He is involved very deeply with this breeding program and should have his results in a couple of years.  I know nothing more of this at this point in time as I have not spoken with him recently.  But it sounds like they are doing great work.  This varroa is worse than a thorn in the side of beekeepers.  I have witnessed the damage personally with hive deprecation, loosing now probably 6 in total. 

My advice to any new beekeeper (and maybe seasoned ones as well), is to really be aware of the symptoms of this evil doer, I was not aware strongly enough personally, it was too late to save my hives before they entered their stage of doom, where I could do nothing to stop the damage done.  Learn about how to keep the hives healthy, #1 point in beekeeping in my opinion.  Great day all.  Cindi
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« Reply #23 on: December 10, 2006, 10:45:00 AM »

I admit, I've never trickeled, but evaporating does not require lifting a single box and takes very little time.  Trickling looks to be much more labor intensive to me.
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« Reply #24 on: December 10, 2006, 11:34:24 AM »

a few years ago I translated a Varroa report from Danish beekeeper society into english. You can read it here

http://apimo.dk/Varroa_report/varroa_report.html

even that heated OX varporise into formic I have not seen effect on the Tracheal mite.
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« Reply #25 on: December 10, 2006, 12:36:10 PM »

Jorn, wow, what a report to work on.  Good for you.

I wonder, like was said in an earlier post about the vapourizing of O.A., yes it produces formic acid.  BUT...maybe the concentration of formic acid is not high enough to admonish tracheal mite.  The formic acid treatment alone, is truly said to rid trachael mite (along with other problems).  There was such a plague involving the trachael mite with bees about 10 years (well up here anyways), that they worked really hard to find ways to get rid of the mite.  The problem is certainly not that it was so many years ago.  My opinion, I was not involved with bees then.  I know that during that time so many years ago I had investigated beekeeping, but got scared off due to the trachael mite problems.  It devastated the beekeeping industry here, I am sure that it was widespread to the U.S. and other places as well?  But I don't know for sure.  Great day. Cindi
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« Reply #26 on: December 10, 2006, 01:21:11 PM »

When I took beekeeping 1 and 2 with an instructor locally, he taught us to use oxalic acid in the spring.  In our area March 1 is when we applied it. 


This is against advices what others say about trickling.

In the beginning of March hives in Finland have mostly palm size areas of brood. in South they are more. Even if trickling kills those few larvae in hives, it does not harm mites under cappings.

Look here Background Information: http://www.epa.gov/PESP/regional_grants/2005/R7-2005.htm

There are a good summary what we know about oxqlic acid. It is said " European investigators, Charri?re and Imdorf (2002) reported that trickling or spraying oxalic acid provided 93-99% control when a single application was made in the fall or early winter to broodless colonies.

Originally trickling method was resolved by Italians.

Difficulties in USA have in southern parts of country because hives have brood all the time. Same is with New Zealand.




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« Reply #27 on: December 10, 2006, 10:24:35 PM »

This is against advices what others say about trickling.

In the beginning of March hives in Finland have mostly palm size areas of brood. in South they are more. Even if trickling kills those few larvae in hives, it does not harm mites under cappings.

Look here Background Information: http://www.epa.gov/PESP/regional_grants/2005/R7-2005.htm

There are a good summary what we know about oxqlic acid. It is said " European investigators, Charri?re and Imdorf (2002) reported that trickling or spraying oxalic acid provided 93-99% control when a single application was made in the fall or early winter to broodless colonies.
Originally trickling method was resolved by Italians.

Difficulties in USA have in southern parts of country because hives have brood all the time. Same is with New Zealand.
[/quote]
Finsky, I appreciate you giving the site to look at regarding O.A. treatment.  I did, and read it thoroughly.  It will be good when the results will all be compiled of so many things.  I will have to agree without doubt what the article is indicating.  It sounds definitely that the O.A. should be applied to BROODLESS colonies.  There may have been a misunderstanding on my part before about treating in the spring, in March.  Yes, by that time Finsky, we do have considerable brood present.  I am under the very distinct impression, that O.A. must only be applied during the "no brood" time of year.  Understood.  In my climate here, we have a period of about December to January where the queen is dormant and does not lay eggs.  It is quite a short window.  I am of the belief that I should apply the acid trickle now.  This is the time NOW when there is no brood present.  The concern that I have is to disturb the hive as it is quite chilly outside, not near freezing, but it is standing about 8 celsius 46 F right now.

Do you think it is too cold to open the hive to do the trickle?  I am feeling a little confused about this entire issue now.  Hmm...Have an awesome day.  thank you all for input.  Cindi.
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« Reply #28 on: December 10, 2006, 11:46:42 PM »



I like to trickle when it is +4 celsius. Ican be done when it is -4 celsius but it is not nice to fingers.

When air is +8C, bees attach quite easily when you move the hand.
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« Reply #29 on: December 10, 2006, 11:53:31 PM »



I like to trickle when it is +4 celsius. Ican be done when it is -4 celsius but it is not nice to fingers.

When air is +8C, bees attach quite easily when you move the hand.

I don't understand what you mean by air +8 C, bees attach quite easily when you move the hand.  Sorry. Please elaborate.  Cindi
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« Reply #30 on: December 11, 2006, 12:27:50 AM »



I don't understand what you mean by air +8 C, bees attach quite easily when you move the hand.  Sorry. Please elaborate.  Cindi

When I move syrup syringe along frame gaps bees wake up and try to attach.  When it is cold they try to move deeper into hive. Last I had to use smoker when they attachde on my hat and hand.
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« Reply #31 on: December 11, 2006, 08:07:25 AM »

Finsky, so OK, it sounds like I will be doing this O.A. treatment, pdq.  It is about +7 C now, and may get a little warmer, I will wear my gloves, don't want the bees to attach.  Oh, Oh, I just realized that you may have been meaning that the bees were trying to ATTACK not ATTACH.  These two words are spelled almost the same, but mean different things.  I thought that you mean ATTACH, which means to cling to, ATTACK means that they were going after your hands to sting.  Our English language is rather confusing to anyone who tries to use it.  Please do not take offence.  I could not understand when you spoke about the bees ATTACHING, why they would attach and it did not make sense.  Now I understand what you were saying to me. I am sorry about the confusion on my part, it doe now make lots of sense.   it is again the English language.  Dratt!!!  You have a nice day Finsky.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #32 on: February 01, 2007, 08:30:02 AM »

"Understand from a chemist that this acid does not vapor right?"

Robo.. doing a Google search on "Heating Oxalic acid".. you'll come across that the rapid heating of Oxalic acid produces Formic Acid.  Finman has stated this also. 

But.. I also found..

"A good yield of formic acid cannot be obtained by merely heating oxalic acid, as a certain portion of the oxalic acid sublimes unchanged. The oxalic acid is therefore heated with glycerol when carbon dioxide and glyceryl monoformate are obtained, and the latter when boiled with water yields formic acid and glycerol"

More details from BEE-L

Quote
From: Donald Aitken
Subject: Re: [BEE-L] Vs: Re: [BEE-L] Formic and Oxalic acids
To: BEE-L

The physical properties of oxalic acid may be of interest in this
connection. The stuff one buys is usually oxalic acid dihydrate, which is a
crystal which has two water molecules attached to each oxalic acid molecule.
The CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics gives the following properties
for oxalic acid dihydrate:

On heating:

1) The water of hydration leaves at 101.5 degrees C. The water boils off
leaving anhydrous oxalic acid crystals.

2) At 157 degrees C the oxalic acid starts to sublime (goes directly from
solid to gas)

3) At 189 degrees C the oxalic acid which has not yet sublimed decomposes to
formic acid and carbon monoxide.

Best regards

Donald Aitken
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"Opportunity is missed by most people because it comes dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison


Cindi
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Location: Grindrod, B.C. Canada


« Reply #33 on: February 01, 2007, 08:41:13 AM »

Interesting and good information.  Great day.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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