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Monday morning myth: small-cell foundation discourages Varroa mites

The idea that small-cell foundation may limit the reproduction of Varroa mites resurfaces frequently. However, some research has shown that mites may actually increase on small cell foundation. An insightful paper on the subject by Berry, Owens, and Delaplane was recently published in the journal Apidologie and can be downloaded here. In the states, small-cell […] Read more

Wednesday wordphile: phoresy

Phoresy is a noun that describes a nonparasitic relationship whereby one species is carried about by another. The relationship is usually commensalistic, meaning one organism benefits from the association but the other organism is unharmed by it. Phoretic is the adjective. Varroa mites that can be seen riding on adult honey bees are often referred […] Read more

HopGuard: the new Varroa pesticide

HopGuard is a new pesticide designed to kill Varroa mites. Although the product is not yet registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), three states have joined together to request a Section 18 Emergency Exemption to use the product in honey bee hives within the boundaries of those states. The Washington State Department of Agriculture, […] Read more

Grease patties help control winter mites

Some people believe that grease patties provide a way to help keep Varroa mite populations low during the winter. This may be true, assuming mite populations are low to start with. A hive that is already heavily infected with Varroa will not benefit from grease patties. Like a screened bottom board, a grease patty most […] Read more