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john berry

Amitraz Failure

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I have just had a report of high hive losses caused by  varoa .Despite the fact that these hives have had treatments in for 5 to 6 weeks They are now crawling with varoa and many have died.I know the beekeeper personally and hives were treated on time with the correct amount of strips. Is anyone else out there having this problem.

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what are the odds that its re-invasion from other hives nearby that have failed due to owners walking away from them or skimping on treatments ?

in my experience resistance doesn't hit all at once. 

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Also the initial mite counts / hive state, if the bees are compromised less of the active ingredient gets passed around, also amitraz is slower acting.

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Posted (edited)

Thanks to John's post I've been reading about Amitraz. Seems like it's not very good at all for us people in sufficient dose, we have the same bio chemical bits that the stuff targets in the mite...

Edited by yesbut
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2 hours ago, john berry said:

I have just had a report of high hive losses caused by  varoa .Despite the fact that these hives have had treatments in for 5 to 6 weeks They are now crawling with varoa and many have died.I know the beekeeper personally and hives were treated on time with the correct amount of strips. Is anyone else out there having this problem.

Have not used apitraz much but apivar has been my autium treatment for some time. It was always a fit and forget treatment until I found myself in a similar position to your friend about 4 yrs ago.

My first reaction was that the product wasn't working as there were mites happily emerging on very sick bees that would have been exposed to treatment prior to entering the cells.

Put in some sticky boards and found that heaps of mites were being killed(30-150) per day 5 wks into treatment.

Take home for me was just how slow acting apivar is. My opinion after this experience and significant Feb monitoring in the years since is it works if mite counts are less than 12 to 15 per half cup of bees. More than 30 and the hive will likely die in a month.

 

Interesting that apitraz claimes to kill 90something % of mites when less than 2 fms of brood.

 

I am sure that after a big honey season for many and there for more broodraising than normal many people will be finding more mites than normal. People not looking will just find more dead hives in spring.

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3 hours ago, Jamo said:

Have not used apitraz much but apivar has been my autium treatment for some time. It was always a fit and forget treatment until I found myself in a similar position to your friend about 4 yrs ago.

My first reaction was that the product wasn't working as there were mites happily emerging on very sick bees that would have been exposed to treatment prior to entering the cells.

Put in some sticky boards and found that heaps of mites were being killed(30-150) per day 5 wks into treatment.

Take home for me was just how slow acting apivar is. My opinion after this experience and significant Feb monitoring in the years since is it works if mite counts are less than 12 to 15 per half cup of bees. More than 30 and the hive will likely die in a month.

 

Interesting that apitraz claimes to kill 90something % of mites when less than 2 fms of brood.

 

I am sure that after a big honey season for many and there for more broodraising than normal many people will be finding more mites than normal. People not looking will just find more dead hives in spring.

I'm just waiting on my apitraz now, be here by thursday hopefully. I treated in mid to late December and stripped out second week of Feb so strips have been out now for month and a half, I'll do a few alcohol washes tomorrow

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When varroa first came to NZ Mark Goodwin recommended using Apivar in Spring because it was slower to act. 

In Spring the broodnest is expanding rapidly and the increase in bees outruns the mites whereas in Autumn the broodnest is contracting with a higher mite to bee ratio using a slower acting miticide can be a real problem. 

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40 minutes ago, frazzledfozzle said:

When varroa first came to NZ Mark Goodwin recommended using Apivar in Spring because it was slower to act. 

In Spring the broodnest is expanding rapidly and the increase in bees outruns the mites whereas in Autumn the broodnest is contracting with a higher mite to bee ratio using a slower acting miticide can be a real problem. 

Agree totally but apivar has 2 week withholding so can't put honey boxes on untill 2 wks after strips come out which can be a problem in spring. Also makes the unprotected honey flow period 2 wks longer. 

My hope is that ox/gly can give us some cover over this time but it's still a work in progress.

I also wonder how our mates across the ditch will get on once they get the mites considering that their honey collection period is often 6 months plus?

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On 5/04/2020 at 3:33 PM, yesbut said:

Thanks to John's post I've been reading about Amitraz. Seems like it's not very good at all for us people in sufficient dose, we have the same bio chemical bits that the stuff targets in the mite...

Been using Amitraz for a few years now, apart from a brief foray into organics ..... and am happy to report I'm still alive , I think.

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invading mites have been entering thick and fast mostly at 3 of my wintering sites , these 3 are neighboured by the same beekeeper..

theres also been almost no dew flow with bad robbing some days... I’ve seen bees landing on the board with a mite attached, the staples have been working as I’ve a carpet of dead crawlies on the floor. 

I decided I’m not playing any games or experimenting with these now it’s the big league and have placed Bayvarol in them. 

Reinvasion is real and can catch you out . 

Ill be happy if all they bring home is mites. 

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11 hours ago, john berry said:

Mite count zero .

Did you have your glasses on ?

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, yesbut said:

Did you have your glasses on ?

Are you questioning @john berry ????

 

He is the Holy Grail of beekeeping.

Edited by Trevor Gillbanks

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Robbing seems to have been worse than ever this year.  Possibly because the Dew hasn't put on a great show.

Generally the shed fan can keep up with the onslaught .... the theory being that the fan sucks air from all the holes in the shed and blows it out the fan screen. The Bees hang around the screen trying to get in, but can't and head home with nothing to report.

The bees that do get in get chopped up by the fan .....

This year they have managed to breach the sliding door into the extracting room , which, with the fan running, is like a negative pressure room.

Strange.

 

Did you have a chat with your neighbouring Bee keeper Stoney ?   I wonder what treatment they are using ?

 

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13 minutes ago, Trevor Gillbanks said:

Are you questioning @john berry ????

 

He is the Holy Grail of beekeeping.

I'm sure even Grails lose their specs sometimes.

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Posted (edited)

Although every treatment we use here has been known to fail at times, my guess would be that the hives that were dead by the time treatment had been in 5 - 6 weeks, were probably already past the point of no return when the treatments were placed.

Edited by Alastair
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Does this also apply to OAG gib tapes?

Did you just cut Philbee some slack?

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I guess I do know a fair bit about beekeeping , what scares me is that every year it seems to be getting just that little bit harder to get things right and if I'm having trouble what is happening to those that don't have my experience.

The proliferation of beehives has not only reduced production per hive and increased costs, it is also increased the likelihood that resistant varoa will occur and also made it a lot harder to breed for resistance. My initial plan for varoa was to select hard for resistance and then open mate in an area where I had about 1000 hives and there were no other beekeepers. If and I agree it would be a big if, I had succeeded I would have been happy to share the genetics with anybody that wanted them.

Times have changed.

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re invasion can catch even the most experience beeks out. trouble is it can snowball in highly populated areas.

whats important to note is timing. if the re invasion is out of step of treatment that gives time for the mites to increase in numbers in the hive and reek havoc on the bees before next treatment.

reminds me of the early days of varroa.

 

 

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This topic is of a great value for me. Thanks for all your info.

 

I'll head to my bees ASAP this week to give them OA fumigation. At least they buy some time by the time apivar kicks in. I treated with apivar 60% of the hives(2 weeks before lockdown) and the rest of them got bayvarol(1 week before lockdown).

I made a sign so I know where is apivar and where is bayvarol. When I'll remove the treatments also I'll try to see if there are any differences in brood, volume of bees, general health........... I'm not very experienced with varroa counting.

Also I balanced the colonies and re-arranged the frames to have all colonies on the same page(honey, pollen, brood and extra food), entrances reduced.

Usually I use apivar at spring only however now I used what I had. Last spring I used staples but now I didn't manage to get GL in time from Clark and no staples ready(luckily I had apivar and bayvarol in stock).

I my area was the same, no honey dew.

 

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1 hour ago, Kiwi Bee said:

I'll head to my bees ASAP this week t

Essential travel of course

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I’m struggling with mites, reinvasion, loads of wasps, feed and robbing! Did I mention the wasps?

 

I haven’t used chemical treatments for a few years now, but found a couple of hives (out of 50) with pms that I missed with the staples after pulling honey. They didn’t survive the onslaught two weeks after inserting new staples. The one that did survive I added a couple of frames of brood. 

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, tristan said:

re invasion can catch even the most experience beeks out. trouble is it can snowball in highly populated areas.

whats important to note is timing. if the re invasion is out of step of treatment that gives time for the mites to increase in numbers in the hive and reek havoc on the bees before next treatment.

it's a prisoner's dilemma situation.

Plenty of beekeepers are adding strips in early feb and pulling them late march, while neighbouring beekeepers are adding strips in late march, and other neighbouring beekeepers are giving up and not adding strips. Those who pulled strips in late march are stuffed in this situation. Who is to blame? the beekeeper who pulls strips in late march and fails to keep monitoring? who knows. I've got sympathy for those competent enough to successfully add strips later.

8 hours ago, yesbut said:

Essential travel of course

per the various emails you will have received, yes, for animal welfare reasons. hobbyist and commercials both.

4 hours ago, CHCHPaul said:

I haven’t used chemical treatments for a few years now, but found a couple of hives (out of 50) with pms that I missed with the staples after pulling honey.

um, i abhor it when people suggest that OA/glycerine isn't a chemical treatment. What, exactly, do you suggest it is? a biological treatment?@! maybe oxalic acid isn't a chemical? god knows what you're getting at. You mean haven't used commercially supplied synthetic strips? if so, say so.

 

some people...

Edited by tommy dave
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LOL, it's a common misconception.

 

On an American beekeepers chat site I'm in a guy advertised his bees for sale as "chemical free". Naturally peoples curiosity was aroused, questioning commenced, and he was forced to admit that he treated them with FGMO, essential oils, and thymol. 

 

None of which were chemicals, far as he was concerned. 😏

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To maintain clean colonies I have found the best option for me is to have a treatment of some sort in over winter...

to give the Mite any breathing space between Feb and August leads to problems. 

That way I don’t really care what my neighbours regime is other than them getting weak and robbed. 

 

 

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