Hello to all.
I am very new to Bees, having only been graced by the arrival of a natural swarm this spring.
There were 3 hives, all bought at a charity event, so just One occupied now.
Being Scared (i tell myself Busy) i have only ever opened the hive twice.
Their hive has 22 frames organised in two tiers, basically one hive on top of the other, and just 2 frames with foundation.
All other frames have no foundation.
Kind of Top-bar but it's a frame.
They appear to be doing well, and have built at least two more combed frames for themselves.
The last time i went and looked closely (from the Outside) i was Lucky enough to see a bee being Ejected from the hive.
I captured it, and saw that it's wings were deformed, and it's colouring was wrong - all Dark.
I also noticed a brown thing on it and thought 'Varroa !'.
To examine the bee under the microscope i dosed the bee with Chloroform vapour for about 20 seconds.
The examination showed absolutely No sign of anything other than Bee.
After around 20 minutes of searching, the bee began to recover, and i decided that it was my imagination, and let the bee Go.
Later, on cleaning the glass that i dosed the bee in, i noticed a tiny brown spot.
Again, under the microscope, it proved to be certainly a Varroa mite.
Stone dead Varroa mite.
It has been 3 days now, and the varoa isn't moving, yet the bee recovered.
The poor deformed bee is probably also dead (due to the DWV etc) yet the Varroa was dead after 20 seconds.
Some research brought up a paper by C.R. Ribbands, Harpenden, in 1950 which (almost) scientifically tested bee anaesthesia with Chloroform, Nitrogen and Carbon Dioxide.
Of the three, his data shows the Chloroform to have almost Zero lasting effects.
To prove or disprove the efficacy of Chloroform in selectively killing Varroa with no lasting effect on the bees is
simply to Capture around 100 bees from a varroa infected hive for testing.
I tried with a cardboard box, and ended up 'capturing' four. Comical really.
Two escaped in the lab.
The other two were tested with Chloroform, one 30 secs and one 20 secs exposure.
Examining them, neither had any anomalies at all - no varroa.
They both fully recovered after around 50 minutes, and flew away.
The scientific test will be to capture some bees, expose them to a known volume of Chloroform in a Known volume of air for X seconds, and then purge out the chloroform (blow air into the container slowly enough to Not blow varroa out too) and then allow the bees to recover, and let them leave.
Counting the number of dead varroa and the number of dead bees in these conditions will allows some scientific data to emerge.
(Ribbands' Study and my simple experiments say No bees will die)
Having stumbled on this, i would appreciate some Help in actually capturing a larger number of bees, preferably without destroying the entire hive.