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Oxalic Acid

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BERNIE 

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has anyone tried vapourizing Oxalic Acid as apposed to trickling. what were your findings.
 

Heather 

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I only trickle- apparently it is safer. For bees and us.
Always had good result with trickle- no bee loss but good varroa drop- even after Apiguard late August
 

Rosti 

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I recall that there was a recent post where a forum member was defending vapourisation as a prefered application method, worth a search to get an alternative view.

Personally I am with Heather, trickle don't vapourise. Vapourising represents far too much effort and the health and safety + gear costs / risks if you dont kit up are too high to justify for once a year use (unless you are treating swarms pre-brood as well, but even then it's still a no from me).
 
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Vapourising was the early method of applying OA and it still has its adherents, sometimes passionately so. OA trickling is now by far the most widely used method - a bee farmer I know uses it on several thousand colonies with good results and if there was an easier or more efficient way of applying OA he would use it.

Vapourizing seems to be less efficient and I suspect this is because if the bees are in a cluster the vapour only really reaches the bees at the bottom of the cluster. A trickle, on the other hand, has gravity to help it move down through the cluster.

The argument that pouring OA syrup on top of the bees in the depths of winter causes too much disturbance is not supported by experience. The bee farmer mentioned above frequently has to dig his bees out of the snow to apply the OA syrup and they come to no harm. His honey crop this year was 70,000 kg.

The amount of syrup used is only about 50g for an entire colony which is less than 1% of the weight of the bees and their frames so the thermal shock is very little - any bee chilled will warm up very quickly and on a small scale it is possible to use warmed syrup - I use an old insulated drinking cup with a lid.
 

Storm™ 

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Following the discussion on this thread I decided to look Oxalic Acid up. I found that it occurs naturally in spinach, and rhubarb leaves. I just wondered has anyone used it (although it will be a lower concentration) in any way. I have seen a couple of forums where people have mentioned it. One even noticed it working by draping the leaves over the frames. As they removed the leaves and chewed them up to get them out it spread oxalic acid round the hive. The results - inconclusive but mite drop did increase. I just wondered if any green beek has had success with it? Cheers.
 
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No idea - I have been lucky with a low mite drop this year, I am especially glad as I really don't feel happy about OA - and won't have to make a decision about it this year!
 

Finman 

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No idea - I have been lucky with a low mite drop this year, I am especially glad as I really don't feel happy about OA - and won't have to make a decision about it this year!
well, next summer you will have mites enough. Trickling hits down the mite number for next summer. If you do nothing before autumn, mite will violate badly wintering bees next year.
 

thedeaddiplomat 

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Does anyone know off-hand how long the pre-diluted OA sold by a well-known emporium lasts before it goes off?

Last year I ordered it quite late, and only just had time to administer it before the warmer weather began and HM decided it was time to get going again. But if I order now, will it have gone off by the New Year?
 
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well, next summer you will have mites enough. Trickling hits down the mite number for next summer. If you do nothing before autumn, mite will violate badly wintering bees next year.
I did treat for varroa, both with Apiguard and Hivemaker's thymol - but won't OA. isn't it a bit like taking antibiotics when nothing is wrong?
 
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Does anyone know off-hand how long the pre-diluted OA sold by a well-known emporium lasts before it goes off?

Last year I ordered it quite late, and only just had time to administer it before the warmer weather began and HM decided it was time to get going again. But if I order now, will it have gone off by the New Year?
I believe the pre-mix trickle has a shelf life of around 2 weeks
 

MJBee 

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OA crystals are very cheap so it is very easy to make your own solution fresh each year. Sticky on here somewhere:)
 
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An OA syrup will last 6 months if you keep it in the 'fridge. Just try not to confuse it with other foodstuffs.

There is a BBKA leaflet on OA, it is a little out of date but has some useful tips.

As thymol treatments are not as effective as the original synthetic pyrethroids were when they were first used, an OA trickle in winter is now widely recommended to mop up the mites which survive the thymol treatment.
 

blackbrood 

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This is a thread with OA recipes. click here

but can I ask, am I right in thinking you make up the OA solution in sugar water and drip the sugar water with the OA in it in between each frame of bees and no more than 5-6ml per seam.

Also you can buy OA crystals from fleabay, will these do for treating bees?
 

Heather 

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Yes, when made up as per my thread- 5 mls per seam- from a 50 ml syringe- and I use slightly warm 2:1 syrup.
You can get the crystals from a chemist- not expensive and if you store, sealed, in dry cupboard they last for a few years.
 

blackbrood 

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Yes, when made up as per my thread- 5 mls per seam- from a 50 ml syringe- and I use slightly warm 2:1 syrup.
You can get the crystals from a chemist- not expensive and if you store, sealed, in dry cupboard they last for a few years.
thanks Heather
 

Skyhook 

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Yes, when made up as per my thread- 5 mls per seam- from a 50 ml syringe- and I use slightly warm 2:1 syrup.
You can get the crystals from a chemist- not expensive and if you store, sealed, in dry cupboard they last for a few years.
Just picturing myself doing it for the first time- while a 50mm syringe would be nice and quick, might I suggest anyone doing it for the first time PRACTICE first. In my experience cheap syringes can stick, and I can imagine squirting half the syringe into a seam :banghead:
 
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Just picturing myself doing it for the first time- while a 50mm syringe would be nice and quick, might I suggest anyone doing it for the first time PRACTICE first. In my experience cheap syringes can stick, and I can imagine squirting half the syringe into a seam :banghead:
The Trickle2 sold by Thornes*

https://secure.thorne.co.uk/popup/trickle2.htm

good for two hives, can also be bought with an empty bottle for practising




*other beekeeping suppliers are availlable
 

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