Just go & buy what you need, half the beeks in the country including myself have been using OA for years. And more will do so in future when Bayvarol for instance becomes completely useless. Forget I mentioned the winking...
Manufacturing for your own use may not be illegal as you are treating your own bees and can monitor success/failure and adjust recipe/dosage based on findings.
Buying from a 3rd party you have no idea of the recipe mix and how to use appropriately.
I have done hive inspections recently where novice beekeepers have bought OA strips and used up to 6 strips in a hive with 2 frames of brood - the queen stopped laying, was disorientated and trying to get as far away from the strips as she could.
I have also done inspections where I see they work well - not knowing if they were bought from a 3rd party or not.
Approved/registered treatments have been tested and have consistent manufacturing standards with instructions for use.
It's absurd that I can buy untreated strips, oxalic acid and glycerin from a supplier and it comes with instructions yet I can't buy ready-made strips from the same person. Can the powers that be in MPI not see that the chance of something going wrong are astronomically higher with people making their own concoctions compared to somebody supplying a carefully calibrated and standard product.
I have no personal experience as to whether oxalic strips work or not (but I will be trying some in a few weeks).
I would much rather be able to buy ready-made strips from a reputable source at least till I get a handle on how they do or don't work.
Strips plus oxalic plus glycerin. What earthly difference could it make whether I mix it up or someone more competent and experienced mixes it up except that I'm more likely to make a mistake.
Yea its crazy. Varoa control has become the difference between a good and bad beekeeper. The least mpi can do is regulate the treatment and get on board with us. Could anyone tell me how per strip they work put to be? Cheers
Very good of Otto to document and share his method. The problem is without a standard there are all sorts of staples out there.
Otto kindly provided %components and methods. I see he air dries them - I see strips in hives that are still dripping!!
I have done numerous hive inspections where the beekeeper has used synthetic treatments, and not read the label. Some get into their head that they know best. Even come across people that whip out the strips after 8 weeks, then reuse 6 mths later! This is nothing to do with oxalic treatments. It's to do with pigheadedness, and this will occur whether there is a safety data sheet or not.
I also know of commercial beekeepers, who because they have been unable to sell honey, have had no option but to convert to O/A strips and have saved tens of thousands of dollars in treatments and their hives have survived.
Then there is the hive inspection, that used every herb known to mankind (all documented on the hive mat) and the only thing missing was the addition of a chicken leg, salt & pepper, for a tasty meal.
Homo Sapiens is a strange critter.
We all know how to run our lives, and don't let anyone else tell me how to do it.
I would really welcome being able to buy pre soaked strips as it would take the hassle out of doing it myself, and I would still have 0/20 vision... the first eye got shot out by the Indians when I was seven in a hell of a battle when I took an arrow and had to forfeit the chocolate biscuit to my sister.
I still quite like her !
Just like the two ladies who took a sojourn up into Northland.
Prior and proper prepearation would have saved the day...... condoms for the customers and oversized for the themselves.
Here we go again. The old OA/GL subject.
I am not a guru, however here are my small observations.
- preferably no wet strips into the hives. The bees feet gets some sort of damage, and they will avoid them. Meanwhile they will walk right onto the dry strips
- again preferably run your strips on a sewing machine however it can be a quick alternative to fold 4 layers and add 1 office staple to close the end and done. These strips will not hold(enclose) as much mixture but they still do a good job. Also the bees will ruin them faster.
When I use my very basic Singer machine I use a twin needle and I run near edge of the paper. it takes several hours to finish 150m(with 3 layers) and 9 bobins. Then I have to make the same thing close to the other edge. I get around 350 strips.
- spread the 4 strips/box to make a square(rectangle). I do not prefer to place the strips in 1 line across the midd section of the box because those not so strong colonies will avoid them
- I found the 35/65% AO/GL is a good ratio, however my ones tend to be 36-37/63-64%.
- I use a thermometer(candy makers) to make sure the mixture NEVER goes above 80C. I have been there when my mixture was boiling(the strips soacked in that mixture will not work very well - not sure why).
- I use a slow cocker, works perfectly fine. I NEVER use it indoor!!!
- I used to hang out the strips to dry. Nowadays I prefer to make them 1-2 weeks earlier and I move the strips from the bottom of the bucket to the top. The top ones will be perfectly fine to use. Yes, I make some extra so I do not have to use the wet ones right away.
I planned to get OA from Clark, however the one from TM works fine too. GL is from Clark
Aah , here we go again.
We cook up the mix in the water jacketed tank that generaly melts wax. It has a simmerstat on it and is set to low when the water is upto speed.
The strips are the grey ones from Hive world.
They are loaded into buckts and then soaked in the acid for a day or so.
What I notice is that the O/A crystallises on the strips as they dry out, which tells me that they are not properly mixed into the glycerine, but I do note that the lastest drum of glycerine from Farmlands is quite a bit thinner than the original stuff.
I would be kinda nice to buy them presoaked by a professional chemist rather than a backyard cooker.
I am about to make my first batch of staples using a 27 L tub with a stainless steel rack that I got from beequip . It comes with instructions but there is no mention of how much oxalic\glycerin you need to make to do one batch. I have tried to ring them but couldn't get through.
Do you just need the bottom staples sitting in the solution or do the whole lot need to be covered. Most of the instructions are excellent when it comes to safety and mixing and they say how much is solution each strip should soak up but there is no instructions on how to actually soak the strips.
Thanks for any help you can give.
If you fill an orange mitre 10 bucket almost full of dy staples, then cook up about 10 litres of o/a and glycerine and tip into bucket when cooked.... it should soak most of those.
Put lid on and turn upside down
Leave overnight and then transfer to another bucket with holes drilled in bottom for final drain.
Works better in a warm room.
Dont forget goggles🥸
I got through on the phone and Russell was very helpful. The cardboard strips should be completely covered and any excess afterwards can be reused later. I am just on my way to the safety shop to get a face shield and some more gloves.