Is it safe to use Oxalic acid on small colonies?

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Hi,
I am planning to use oxalic acid by trickle method on 5 hives. However, the colonies in 2 of the hives appear very small. Is it safe to use Oxalic acid on these? I think I have scared myself by reading the extra small print on the Api-Bioxal packet about overdosing the bees. I am planning to be very careful not to overdose them and put just 5ml per seam. I haven't treated with Api-Bioxal before so perhaps I am being overly cautious.
 

mbc 

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Hi,
I am planning to use oxalic acid by trickle method on 5 hives. However, the colonies in 2 of the hives appear very small. Is it safe to use Oxalic acid on these? I think I have scared myself by reading the extra small print on the Api-Bioxal packet about overdosing the bees. I am planning to be very careful not to overdose them and put just 5ml per seam. I haven't treated with Api-Bioxal before so perhaps I am being overly cautious.
Vaping is safer for small colonies.
 

Ian123 

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I’ve cleaned the wood in lots of nucs!! With oxalic, as you’ve said above just stick with the 5ml per seam you should be fine.
 

Sanntos 

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Yes both are safe, but vaping is probably a little bit safer
 

Finman 

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5 ml per seem is for 2 brood hives.

In under one colonirs 3 ml per seam is better
Too much trickle syrup makes bees wet, and they may loose their heat control then and ability to form cluster. .... yeas, it has happenef to me few times.

In original treatment advices 3 ml / seam is for one box wintering. 3 x 10 = 30 ml for the full box.
 

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if they are small and you are opening up to trickle, it would be a good idea to reduce the volume of the brood box. Replace the outer frames with insulation (Kingspan etc) so they have a smaller space to heat during winter. Will give them a better chance of getting though to spring, unless there is another underlying reason for size.
 

elainemary 

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I’ve cleaned the wood in lots of nucs!! With oxalic, as you’ve said above just stick with the 5ml per seam you should be fine.
I was wondering what do you do with double Nucs where one brood box is sited on top of the other? Do you trickle 10ml? I vaporised last year but it was a faff with polyNucs so wondering whether to trickle Nucs this year when no evidence of brood.
 

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5 ml per seem is for 2 brood hives.

In under one colonirs 3 ml per seam is better
Too much trickle syrup makes bees wet, and they may loose their heat control then and ability to form cluster. .... yeas, it has happenef to me few times.

In original treatment advices 3 ml / seam is for one box wintering. 3 x 10 = 30 ml for the full box.
Would warming the syrup to say 30c help & carry to the apiary in a flask? Like having a warm shower! Will the bees take up the small amount quite quickly and so be much nicer for them if warmed?
 

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Would warming the syrup to say 30c help & carry to the apiary in a flask? Like having a warm shower! Will the bees take up the small amount quite quickly and so be much nicer for them if warmed?
Take up ? What does it mean?

Sugar makes bees surface dirty outside. Next day you can see tiny droplets on wings. Bees do not eate the acid syrup. If they eate, there will not be any droplets on wings next day.

Bees rub themselves to get ridd of dirty syrup.
 

elainemary 

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Take up ? What does it mean?

Sugar makes bees surface dirty outside. Next day you can see tiny droplets on wings. Bees do not eate the acid syrup. If they eate, there will not be any droplets on wings next day.

Bees rub themselves to get ridd of dirty syrup.
Sorry , I meant trophallaxis (aka take up). Are you sure that’s correct re rubbing wings?

Here’s an article in ‘Bee culture’ which suggests this is uncertain. States consumption by insects and mites could be through passing through cuticle or through imbibing / trophallaxis by the bee before transmission to the mite. N.B we now know mites live on fat body vs haemolymph


“The mode of action, although not clearly understood, seems to be through its acidity (pH near 0.9). OA crosses the cuticle of the insects and mites through the topical application being observed a few hours after administration. Another view is OA vapors enter through the soft pads of the mite’s feet and travels to the blood stream, killing the mite. It is also thought that it destroys parts of the mite’s mouth. And yet another is the honey bees consumes the OA disbursing it through it hemolymph to be imbibed by the mite. It is important to appreciate the mechanism of action remains cloudy”
 

oliver90owner 

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The method of treatment is 5ml/seam of bees. That has no connection to any particular colony size, surely? One seam - 5ml, or ten seams - 50ml in total (but 5ml/seam).

Just read the instructions carefully and follow them precisely. There should not be any ambiguities within those instructions.
 

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Yep, if one only has 4 seams then only 20mls is needed. One has to dribble the seams only, I no longer use the syringe dribble method preferring to vape but when I did use the syringe my small bottle of mixture was pre warmed with hot water first.
 

0bee-1 

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never used OA but thinking of vaping (gas vape) next year ... what amount would you use for a 5 frame nuc as opposed to a 'full' brood box ?? thanks in advance :)
 

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never used OA but thinking of vaping (gas vape) next year ... what amount would you use for a 5 frame nuc as opposed to a 'full' brood box ?? thanks in advance :)
If vaping from underneath I use about 1.8g it doesn't matter if you use more
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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I use the same for a nuc or hive.
It makes little difference actually, I the think the LASI mob said that 2.2 grams was the optimum amount regardless of hive size and that more would do no harm
 

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Sorry , I meant trophallaxis (aka take up). Are you sure that’s correct re rubbing wings?

Here’s an article in ‘Bee culture’ which suggests this is uncertain. States consumption by insects and mites could be through passing through cuticle or through imbibing / trophallaxis by the bee before transmission to the mite. N.B we now know mites live on fat body vs haemolymph

This writer is not very professional in the subject what he is writing.

I have seen with my own eyes, how next day bees wings are full of tiny droplets.

Elaimary you can look too with you own eyes, what bees do when you have trickled to bees.

Basic studies were done anf reported in European Varroa Group 20 years ago.
 

SWHives 

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When its best to use OA trickle? I read somewhere it is most effective when bees clustered up. That would only happen when its cold enough. Is it safe to open the hive when it's that cold?
 
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