Alcohol wash?

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Nannysbees

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Do you do an alcohol wash as part of your normal beekeeping practice? If so,would you do this before or after varroa treatment? Just as a one off, if you see signs of an infestation, or would you do it regardless?
 
Do you do an alcohol wash as part of your normal beekeeping practice? If so,would you do this before or after varroa treatment? Just as a one off, if you see signs of an infestation, or would you do it regardless?
Sugar roll is preferable as it doesn't kill the bees.
 
I just treat as well but viewed a comment albeit from America to say it it common practice for UK beekeepers to alcohol wash, something I wasn't convinced of!!!
 
I don't use an alcohol wash, I did use a sugar roll in the past which confirmed the presence of varroa. Now I simply treat as many others do unless a colony is struggling and I need to look for causes.
 
I don't treat - I do regular sugar rolls (not every inspection these days but you get to know your bees). Only did an alcohol wash twice ... once because I was not convinced sugar rolls were an accurate measure of infestation and didn't know any better and once when I did a comparison between a sugar roll and an alcohol wash to prove (to myself anyway) that there was little difference between the two methods. I can's stomach the death of a cupful of bees for something that can be established with a method that does not require killing them.
 
I don't use an alcohol wash, I did use a sugar roll in the past which confirmed the presence of varroa. Now I simply treat as many others do unless a colony is struggling and I need to look for causes.
In 99.999999 % of cases the presence of honeybees is an indication of varroa!
 
If one needs to determine mite load then a sugar roll, forget monitoring boards as they are so innacurate and tell one little when it comes to mites except after an application for which it will tell you they have 100's of the buggers.
 
I haven't ever alcohol-"washed" or sugar-rolled any bees because I'm too pathetic to intentionally kill them. Ian Steppler just did a video showing that he does check his bees....in fact he got quite a shock at how many mites were still around after Apivar treatment. He has started using a detergent wash, which looked blessedly quick (from the bees' point of view) and as he said, smells better than alcohol.

If you did a test and found the bees apparenty had an insignificant varroa-load, would you be prepared to give treatment a miss?
 
I haven't ever alcohol-"washed" or sugar-rolled any bees because I'm too pathetic to intentionally kill them. Ian Steppler just did a video showing that he does check his bees....in fact he got quite a shock at how many mites were still around after Apivar treatment. He has started using a detergent wash, which looked blessedly quick (from the bees' point of view) and as he said, smells better than alcohol.

If you did a test and found the bees apparenty had an insignificant varroa-load, would you be prepared to give treatment a miss?
Sugar roll doesn't kill the bees.
 
Sugar roll doesn't kill the bees.

I know, but it still seems horrible and I doubt the bees would be queuing up for it if they had the choice. ;) I've read a few times that it's also less conclusive regarding mite numbers.

There's still the question of whether most people can bring themselves to leave out treating a colony that has an infestation at a level that is below the danger threshold. With some treatments, isn't there also a question as to whether the overal efficacy is potentially reduced if you leave out treatments for individual colonies in an apiary?

Personally, I think you should treat them all or treat none of them. For the possible reassurance of some and the disgust of others, I currently follow the first described regime......but that might change.
 
I know, but it still seems horrible and I doubt the bees would be queuing up for it if they had the choice. ;) I've read a few times that it's also less conclusive regarding mite numbers.

There's still the question of whether most people can bring themselves to leave out treating a colony that has an infestation at a level that is below the danger threshold. With some treatments, isn't there also a question as to whether the overal efficacy is potentially reduced if you leave out treatments for individual colonies in an apiary?

Personally, I think you should treat them all or treat none of them. For the possible reassurance of some and the disgust of others, I currently follow the first described regime......but that might change.
The image of bees queuing up has stuck!

Agreed. I go with OA sublimation and notice a difference in how many cells are recapped after (in certain colonies).
 
I know, but it still seems horrible and I doubt the bees would be queuing up for it if they had the choice. ;) I've read a few times that it's also less conclusive regarding mite numbers.

There's still the question of whether most people can bring themselves to leave out treating a colony that has an infestation at a level that is below the danger threshold. With some treatments, isn't there also a question as to whether the overal efficacy is potentially reduced if you leave out treatments for individual colonies in an apiary?

Personally, I think you should treat them all or treat none of them. For the possible reassurance of some and the disgust of others, I currently follow the first described regime......but that might change.
No.
No.
and No.

If your have a colony that consistently records low mite numbers why would you treat them. I'm in agreement if they record high counts on a regular basis but there's a lot of tripe published about varroa infesstation and the fact that bees cannot survive without treatment ... some can't but there are some that can. Don't knock till you've spent a season or two doing sugar rolls on a regular basis - the results mighy surprise you. Isn't it better to know than to assume ?
 
I haven't ever alcohol-"washed" or sugar-rolled any bees because I'm too pathetic to intentionally kill them. Ian Steppler just did a video showing that he does check his bees....in fact he got quite a shock at how many mites were still around after Apivar treatment. He has started using a detergent wash, which looked blessedly quick (from the bees' point of view) and as he said, smells better than alcohol.

If you did a test and found the bees apparenty had an insignificant varroa-load, would you be prepared to give treatment a miss?
It was from this vlog that the comment came regarding uk bee farmers mostly use alcohol washes!!! Ian had used apivar and thought it hadn't bev as successful as in previous years thus doing alcohol washes
 
Planned to alcohol wash before and after treatment with Apiguard. Washed all my big colonies at end of August. Results - 3% to 13%. Used Apiguard for the first time. Intended to do second mite wash but the amount of brood had dropped so much that I didn't want to go shaking the one or two frames with brood by the end of September. (Is this what Apiguard does? Queens stopping to lay.) So I've been counting the drop.
One colony still dropping 25v/day, I've put in Apivar. The rest I'll do an OA dribble in December.
I see alcohol washing as a humane way to kill the sample. Not tried a sugar shake but sounds like a way of seriously aggravating some bees.
. . .. Ben
 
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Planned to alcohol wash before and after treatment with Apiguard. Washed all my big colonies at end of August. Results - 3% to 13%. Used Apiguard for the first time. Intended to do second mite wash but the amount of brood had dropped so much that I didn't want to go shaking the one or two frames with brood by the end of September. (Is this what Apiguard does? Queens stopping to lay.) So I've been counting the drop.
One colony still dropping 25v/day, I've put in Apivar. The rest I'll do an OA dribble in December.
I see alcohol washing as a humane way to kill the sample. Not tried a sugar shake but sounds like a way of seriously aggravating some bees.
. . .. Ben
I don't understand why you would do an alcohol wash after treating? If you monitor the drop with apiguard surely you'd see low numbers after the treatment?
 

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