I had a great time at the EAS conference last week – I will try to post some pictures. In the meantime, I did a mite check in two of my hives this morning. We have a cooler weekend coming up where it will be possible to treat with Formic Pro, so I wanted to get a reading on my larger hives. I use a powdered sugar roll that has repeated done as well or better than an alcohol wash, so I am pretty confident in my results.
The picture here shows my second hive, which I call Io (one of the moons of Jupiter). If you count carefully, you will find 9 mites floating here. I start with a half-cup of bees, which is roughly 300 bees, so this is 9/300 = 3%. Not a high result, but going into the fall this would be problematic.
So I am treating this weekend. I actually used Formic Pro on this very hive in the spring, as it had a count of 13/300 at that time. I will probably use ApiGuard instead, which is thymol based instead of formic based, so I am using an alternate chemical for this second treatment. Both are organic compounds that occur naturally in nature, these concentrations are just high enough to kill the mites and not the bees.
May you prosper and find honey.