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bobba 

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:eek:

I am worried about my bees....again...

I have OA vaped this hive twice with a 5 day gap.

This is the 48h board from the 2nd vape. It was cleaned at 24h.

The 24h board from the 1st vape was insane, it was 2 deep in places. There were 100s of moribund mites still crawling around too.

I vaped my 2 hives (at that time) in the spring before putting supers on and got 0 mites. I actually suspected my OA might be defective as it was a bit damp and some was jumping out of the pan. So I ordered some new OA and re-vaped, again 0.

I got 2 swarms from one of my hives in June (not the one this board is from) vaped both swarms and got 0.

My other hives are currently dropping 10-20 per board, so I am not concerned.

This hive had a high mite load last year. But by the 2nd vape was down to about 200 on the 48 hour board. (cleared at 24h)

I am worried it will take many more vapes at 5 day intervals to reach acceptable levels. I am guessing maybe another 4 or 5 vapes.... So am concerned that the hive will have a high count whilst prepping winter bees.

Should I be concerned by these numbers?

This is my favorite hive, so it pains me to see this one with the high count. So in short is there any more I can do to help reduce the load faster?

Thanks as always.
 

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oliver90owner 

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I’m not surprised you are worried as the loadings are/were high. Oxalic should get rid of around 95% of the phoretic mites if done properly. But if half were in cells at the time, later treatments will get those - a lot. That is why a third vape is needed - because you won’t get any of the ‘just capped’ varroa with that second dose.

So lets hear of the third drop before you go off on a tangent (about umpteen more vapes needed).
 

Erichalfbee 

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Yes you need that third and sometimes fourth vape. I’ve been using OAV for ten years as my sole autumn treatment and I’ve only ever had to give one colony more than 4 vapes and that was because they were robbing a mite bomb
 

bobba 

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Thanks for the reassurance.

I will let you know how the next round goes.
 

hemo 

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Bubba when vaping you will ideally need to cover a complete brood cycle of 21 days to catch 95%+ in a colony so four vapes may be needed at 5 day intervals. If drone brood is still present then a 5th may be necessary.
 

bobba 

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Bubba when vaping you will ideally need to cover a complete brood cycle of 21 days to catch 95%+ in a colony so four vapes may be needed at 5 day intervals. If drone brood is still present then a 5th may be necessary.
Thanks Hemo,

I know, this is where my original concern comes from. I see 1000s of mites dropping, so after a vape cycle of 4-5 shots, I figure there could still potentially be a dangerously high load.

But I will see how the numbers look after the 3rd vape, then assess from there.
 

Erichalfbee 

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Bubba when vaping you will ideally need to cover a complete brood cycle of 21 days to catch 95%+ in a colony so four vapes may be needed at 5 day intervals. If drone brood is still present then a 5th may be necessary.
You don’t normally need a fifth. Oxalic will continue to be active for a few days so will get any late drones.
 

hemo 

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Whether a fifth is needed may depend on the insert board, I have had colonies before that keep dropping though likely down to possible robbing of other colonies somewhere.

One of mine has had four vapes and still seeing 150 mites on the board, cleaned said board off and 7 hours later another 40 on the board. Will need another check Sunday to see how the numbers are going and they may well get #5.
 

Hachi 

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Damn! A lot more than I ever thought I'd have
I helped someone a couple of years ago and after four vapes we were still at >500 drop. I said to continue, they declined. The hive died out the following early summer.
 

bobba 

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What about using Randy’s OA slow release sponge option?
Thanks Bugs, I have never heard of the sponge option, I will research.

This is the 24h board after the 3rd vape!

I am down to a fraction of the first 24h board, so numbers are decreasing, but still look worrying high to me.

I just cannot see 5 vapes cutting it, I still suspect it will probably need 3-4 more, (6-7 total).
 

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Erichalfbee 

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Thanks Bugs, I have never heard of the sponge option, I will research.

This is the 24h board after the 3rd vape!

I am down to a fraction of the first 24h board, so numbers are decreasing, but still look worrying high to me.

I just cannot see 5 vapes cutting it, I still suspect it will probably need 3-4 more, (6-7 total).
Then abandon it and put in Apivar. Just as an experiment catch a hundred foragers and sugar roll them. Tell me what you find.
 

bobba 

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I must confess I failed to do any mite level checks mid season. After vaping in the spring twice and getting 0, I thought things would be ok.

Then abandon it and put in Apivar. Just as an experiment catch a hundred foragers and sugar roll them. Tell me what you find.
Sorry, but I have crunched the math and blieve any value procured by a 100 bee sample would likly be of little value at this point. There are a lot of bees in this hive too, further depreciating the value of a 100 bee sample. I already know there are a lot of mites in this hive.

I am guessing you intend to tell if the OA is effectively killing all the phoretic mites after a treatment - that's actually a clever idea.

Unfortunately my math says a single 100b sample is still unlikely to be of value. However if the weather is nice and I have a spare moment I will give it a try for you.



If you could confirm I am doing the basics right I think that would be a good starting point.

The hive has a brood + 1/2 and super on the bottom.

I block the entrance, put in a clean inspection board, load my vape with a piled 2 g scoop of OA. I have weighed and checked the scoop portions and am probably using closer 2.5g. I pop the vape in the special slot in the back of my floor, block the special slot. Power on, wait 4m, power off, then wait 10m more. At 14m I unblock the entrance and remover the vape, closing the special slot again.

I count 24h later, flip the inspection board and count at 48h, then remove the inspection board and clean.

I treated on 25/8/2020, 30/8/2020 and 4/9/2020.

Does this all sound good and proper?


I do not poses any Apivar, but do have some MAQS. I think I will wait for the 48h board then may consider switching up as you suggest. (If I had some to hand I would try it right away).

I wish I had taken a pic of the 1st 24h board. As I said it was insane, there were 1000s, more red than white, 2+ deep in places with 100s still crawling around 1/2 dead. So progress has been made.
 

Hachi 

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Damn! A lot more than I ever thought I'd have
I used maqs once and wont use it again
 

hemo 

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The OA vape is working for you, the mites you will be seeing now won't be phoretic ones but the ones from emerging brood unless your bees are robbing an infested colony.
 

Erichalfbee 

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Hemo is on the right track.
The purpose of sugar rolling returning bees is to see if they are bringing mites home. Your first vape has already dealt with home acquired infestation.
 

Erichalfbee 

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I must confess I failed to do any mite level checks mid season. After vaping in the spring twice and getting 0, I thought things would be ok.



Sorry, but I have crunched the math and blieve any value procured by a 100 bee sample would likly be of little value at this point. There are a lot of bees in this hive too, further depreciating the value of a 100 bee sample. I already know there are a lot of mites in this hive.

I am guessing you intend to tell if the OA is effectively killing all the phoretic mites after a treatment - that's actually a clever idea.

Unfortunately my math says a single 100b sample is still unlikely to be of value. However if the weather is nice and I have a spare moment I will give it a try for you.



Power on, wait 4m, power off, then wait 10m more. At 14m I unblock the entrance and remover the vape, closing the special slot again.
I don’t think ten minutes is necessary. All you are waiting for is for the vapour to settle. A couple of minutes after power is off is likely ok.
Are you using a varrox?
A more active method of delivery is much handier. I use a sublimox but the Gasvap is cheaper
 

Arfermo 

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Sublimating OA is most effective when there is no brood, capped or otherwise which means any - sorry, all the mites - are exposed and not tucked away inside capped cells playing havoc. That is why I have always treated soon after Xmas - and give fondant at the same time if necessary. One treatment, possibly two max depending upon drop, two jobs done at the same time to see 'em through to spring with least interference. No failures or problems.
 

Erichalfbee 

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Sublimating OA is most effective when there is no brood, capped or otherwise which means any - sorry, all the mites - are exposed and not tucked away inside capped cells playing havoc. That is why I have always treated soon after Xmas - and give fondant at the same time if necessary. One treatment, possibly two max depending upon drop, two jobs done at the same time to see 'em through to spring with least interference. No failures or problems.
Do you use a spring treatment?
 

The Poot in Somerset 

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I had this same issue on one hive out of four last year. Just keep on vaping and you will defeat the little sods.
 
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