July 2018

NWA Beekeepers Meeting Minutes

Date: 07-09-2018

Attendance: 40

Old News: Ron, Paula and Marci for

New News: The August meeting will feature a honey and mead tasting. Honey must be submitted by 6:30. One submission per club member. The winner will receive a Bee T-shirt from Brad Keck.

Snacks: Thanks to Ron, Paula and Marci for bringing the food and drink tonight.

Topic: Varroa Mites

Speaker: Winfridus Bakker

Presentation: Varroa Mites, History, Problems and Control measures

Comparison: Mites are relatively large on bees in comparison to ticks on humans. Mites have a big impact on delivering virus to bees.

Contact with the European bees delivered mites to bees into the USA. Mites transmit viruses to bees via a bite. This is similar to a drug addict using a dirty needle.

Threshold for resilience for mite-infested honey bee colonies is decreasing.

It is better to raise bees locally versus bringing them in from a distance from a commercial breeder.

Bees need to adapt genetically to the viral challenges with Varroa mite being an important vector.

The less we do to control mites the more issues we will have with varroa mites.

Many domestic hives close together create an environment that causes mites to propagate.

  1. Lack of selection for mite resistance bee stock.

  2. Heavy hive densities.

  3. ?

Do a mite count in the beginning of September. If you have a large number then treat for mites!

Natural drop of mites to bottom boards are between 2% to 20% of mite population.

2: Reproduction cycle of the Varroa mite.

Mites enter cell with bee larva at 5 to 5.5 days. Mites hop from one bee to another.

Do mite test every 3-4 weeks starting early in Spring.

If you are going to inspect for mites be sure to always use the same method. Bottom sticky board check.

The sticky bottom board screening with vegetable oil allow for the bee keeper to check mites each day without interrupting the hive.

Check every day.

Counting mites will indicate that the queen, in still laying eggs.

Advantages of sticky board screening:

Queen alive?

Detection of hive beetles.

Detection of moths.

Control options for Varroa mites:


Hop elements (Hopguard)

Formic acid pads


Mites count will help you determine if mites are an issue or not?

Currently best methods for controlling mites are acid pads fumigation.

Treatments need to be done in early spring and late summer.