2022/2023 Planning and Changes – Varroa Part 2

Varroa Management: Rough outline on my treatment plan. I’m usually very anal and plan for things years in advance but for whatever reason I have always just wung it for pest management. Little late to the party but I did realize I need to lay out a formal plan and execute. Being a bee keeper is pretty much project management! I’m breaking my plan into 4 streams of work and schedules realizing that each of these different situations needs a unique plan and timeline. Today we will cover over-wintered hives and my treatment plan.

Packages/Spring Splits:

April: Packages will arrive April 16th this year and it’s looking like it will be a bit chilly. The primary focus will be on getting the queens accepted, the queen laying, and the hive building! I will be making my splits around the same time depending on mated queen availability.

May: If the hive is looking strong, queen laying nicely, and larvae ready to cap I will hit them with an OA dribble the 2nd week of May and OA Vape the 4th week of the month.

June: As the flow is on and the bees are filling the supers it’s very difficult to get a drastic reduction in mites it’s more about keeping the levels in check! Last year I had fairly good success using Hopguard 3 on stronger hives so if the hives are doing well and since these hives haven’t been hit with Hopguard 3 I will use that for the primary treatment! The bonus is that you can use this treatment with supers on and regardless of temperature!

July: As the flow is winding down and supers are getting pulled and stacked I will be hitting the hives with a few rounds of OA vaping and a dribble. I had mixed success with the OA glycerine pads Randy Oliver has been experimenting with. I will most likely try them in 2-3 hives again. July 4th give or take a week is when I will be drastically reducing brood in the hives to knock back population in anticipation of the dearth so these hives will have a physical removal of mites a

August: Splits have been pulled from all of these hives if they have a split to give and it’s time to restart my bee keeping calendar. August is when I’m going to start my work for the 2023 season! This year I will be treating in August with Apiguard once I have supers off and splits have been made! I will measure mites before and after treatment and if post treatment the mite numbers have not been reduced I will apply an additional treatment.

I will cover any subsequent treatments in a winter prep series!

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