Should I calculate mites before killing them

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mrDoe 

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Oh I just can?t let you go on that.

Yes, inspectors are sometimes ordinary beekeepers (without beekeeping qualifications even) BUT they spend most of their summers visiting several beekeepers a day, inspecting thousands of hives a year. They are trained, and while I cannot say everyone in the UK is brilliant (because I've not met then all) all those I have met are knowledgeable, helpful, and courteous.

One might ask what your qualifications are Finman, if your going to start getting personal, but that seems unnecessary and rude, we are all here to learn from each other and contribute where we can. If you already know the answer to whether or not mites should be counted or if you should just treat every time you see one, why did you start this thread in the first place?


Why do I keep saying it might be different where you are than here in the UK? Because, while I don't think you always give advice that is pertinent to someone keeping bees in the UK, I would never want to insult another beekeeper over the way they chose to do their beekeeping, a sentiment you unfortunately seem to lack!

I'm glad you've edited out some of your harsher comments about me from your earlier post and I hope in the future we can both remain more civil and respectful of each others methods, even when we don't agree with them.




Peter
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Polyanwood 

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To go back to the original question. I have some sympathy with the approach of killing the varroa when you see them, but we want to minimise chemical use too, so I think Admin's advice is simple and sound. Treat with Oxalic in the Winter when there is no brood. Treat with Thymol in the Autumn. If there are signs of varroa when there is brood, do icing sugar treatment or if like me the salesmen charmed your money out of you, use Hiveclean.
 

Finman 

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Treat with Oxalic in the Winter when there is no brood. Treat with Thymol in the Autumn. .
That I meant: do it without calculation. Even if you see no mite drop they are still there.

Second what I meant is that even if you do not see need of treating in winter, do it however with oxalic. Even small number of mites is usefull to catch away.

What happens then if basic procedures did not succeed? It happens often. You have still several methods to be used if you see that there are too much mites in the back of young bees or in drone pupae.

But if it is main yield, keep fingers out of mites then. It disturbs foraging badly. If the hive swarms, you have a good opportunity to clean the colony - if is seems so.

*************

The worst alternative is that you calculate mites all the time and use unefficient killing methods. But of course you may do it.

Some recommend that dilute the oxalic to half or give half dosage. That is very harmfull job and those guys think that they have done well to their apiary. So called "positive guys".

..
 
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tony350i 

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how about some of you try and get there bees on clean and more natural sized brood wax and see how often you have to treat your bees. it isn't that hard to do.

what do you all spend on treatments per year on your bees to keep them a live.

TC
 

Hivemaker. 

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Around £1.25 per year,so not to bad. How much would it cost roughly to get them on natural size foundation,and just out of interest does it mean you don't ever have to treat for varroa again,and they remain as strong viable colonys?
 
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tony350i 

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?1.25 well no one can grumble at that:), I can only say that I haven?t treated this winter and the winter before, I checked all my bees and topped up the fondant last week and they all look good to me, I will be in a better position about the strength of my hives in the spring,
I will take the camera with me and you can see for yourself.
I haven?t yet but if I do lose any to varroa I will be honest and tell.
As far as cost goes it was a lot more than ?1.25 my plastic fully draw comb cost me 200 pound including shipping from the USA plus thrones want there pound of flesh for 4.9mm foundation.

My target is a brood box with natural cells of different sizes and clean natural wax, I think this is a good start to having strong healthy bees.

TC
 

Hivemaker. 

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Thank you Tony,very interesting, please keep us posted as this is an interesting subject and i'm interested how they do long term.perhaps with the research going on and breeding of resistant bee's combined with your methods it could be a really good thing. I just remain open minded and interested into most research for the good of bee's.
 
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admin 

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Thanks Tony and Hivemaker,its a nice thread that is interesting to read.
 
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