GORMANSTON: Tuesday, first lecture.

This lecture, by Flemming, was entitled: ‘The Varroa Mite – an interesting creature.’  My note reads: “Lights out for presentation – darker than the dormitory at night! Therefore no notes and I nodded a lot.”

I did, however, note that the Danes cope with the mite by drone brood removal in Spring, an application of formic acid (60% as I recall) in Summer after the supers are off, and a Winter treatment with oxalic acid.  I don’t remember why thymol isn’t included in the range of treatments; maybe Flemming, who has just joined the Beekeepers of Ireland Facebook group and thus see this, will enlighten us.

Varroa Jacobsoni (which ours was mistakenly thought to be) and Apis ceranae have a stable host: parasite relationship but our western honeybee, Apis mellifera has no defence. Apis ceranae has small bees and small colonies. 

I don’t recall ever reading what the natural relationship is between Varroa destructor and its natural host, which I assume to be a strain of Apis ceranae.  Can anybody point me (and other readers) towards an answer?


About chrissladesbeeblog

I have been keeping bees since 1978 and currently have about a dozen hives. I am a member of the BBKA where for many years I represented Dorset at the Annual Delegates' Meeting. I am the co-author (with Dave MacFawn of of S. Carolina) of "Getting the Best from Your Bees" and am working on a book of my own poems : "Bee People".
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One Response to GORMANSTON: Tuesday, first lecture.

  1. Flemming says:

    Hi – short reply from Denmark.
    First of all thanks. Enjoyed my stay I Ireland.
    In Denmark we are using “strategies” fighting varroa. You have to make a 3 step strategy.
    1. Spring treatment (for example could be dronebrood removal),
    2. summer treatment (after honey harvest)(for example 4 times 60% formic acid or krämerboard (85 %) or nassenheider evaporator (60 %) or some other evaporations methods)
    3. and then late fall (winter treatment in December) with oxalic acid trickling.

    Yes, we could use apiguard (thymol product), but since it works more or less in the same way as formic acid, it is not an improval for us. Therefore we decided not to take it into our strategy – recommendation. New methods – more beekeeper confusion. We try to keep our methods simple. But in the next years we will start working with thymol.
    More information (note older information – but still good):
    Please do not expect that I will be too active writing – plenty to do with Danish beekeeping.
    Best Flemming

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