Oxalic & Glycerine

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yesbut

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Nelson
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re OA strips, they've been used by all & sundry for how many years now ? Oxalic is hardly a stranger in the the varroacide field, it's mode of action is well understood, it's effect on bee biology is understood, it's been used in various ways for many years worldwide, why the reticence in discussing it ? The last large OA thread in the previous incarnation of this forum got closed down because of dispute between a member and the forum's owner.....AFAIK that had nothing to do with use and application of OA staples.
 
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Reactions: southbee
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Southland
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I would very much like to give Phil’s staples another go but so nervous after the disaster we had when we used them in autumn a few years ago.

I think in retrospect it was probably a combination of the staples and us not really knowing what we were doing that caused our big losses.

it’s one of those chicken and egg situations but probably our actions caused the problem.
I'm with you there, it's scary and it's tricky to find the right treatment for your situation. That's where synthetic treatments are so convenient. We are starting to experiment with some sites giving them organic treatments, with mixed results, but haven't used staples so far. We're using oxalic vapour in the winter, which helps them come cleaner into the spring, but is not a stand alone answer.
 

Alastair

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The last large OA thread in the previous incarnation of this forum got closed down because of dispute between a member and the forum's owner.....AFAIK that had nothing to do with use and application of OA staples.

And that dispute was about the exact same problem. I was the member who aggravated the other member I will confess that. But that was simply that I asked a few simple questions, and trying to get a straight answer was akin to trying to get blood from a stone. Whole thing could have been resolved in a few posts, and friendly manner, if not for the secret squirrel attitude that bordered on psychotic.

Shame to see the same attitude still in play.

I would gladly use oxalic staples, if it could be done without major damage to my bees. There are some people here such as Otto who are extremely helpful, there are others who are here to learn what they can from others, but give nothing back.
 
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Reactions: Gino de Graaf
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Bay of plenty
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We have had reasonable success using ox gly during summer. Mite washes in Feb were mostly single figures for half cup of bees. Treated with apivar in Feb which mostly worked well but still had a few hives on a few sites collapse during autumn. Our best hives by far are the 2 yards that got 2 lots of ox gly a month apart.
 
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Plenty of players up and down the country are experimenting with it in various forms majority of which I would say fairly successfully and there are literally hundreds of pages of shared information from some of those players in the ox / gl thread on the old platform.
i think the mentality of only 2 alternating synthetic treatments per season with very little if any monitoring done is a bit backwards to be honest.
it may have worked for the last how ever many yrs but the evidence is beginning to stack up that it’s simply not good enough now,
choices are to either stand still while scratching your head and carry on as before while slowly being consumed by varroa destructor or think outside the box just a little... switch on the brain and maybe even be open to try out fresh ideas like something organic as an in between treatment for example.
hundreds of others are trying just that and I cant say if they are being successful or not but I can say in my own experience running more than two treatments while timing them well works very well for me.

the roses are there - ya just gotta sniff them
 
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Whakatane
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We're using oxalic vapour in the winter, which helps them come cleaner into the spring, but is not a stand alone answer.
Hi @southbee We have been considering using it. If you are vaporizing in the winter do you restrict your use to certain day temperatures or do you use it no matter what the day/night temperature. Sorry if this has been covered elsewhere. Also hubby said where did you buy your vaporizer from? Thanks
 
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Hawkes Bay
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I would love to use oxalic strips but first I want to know why many very experienced beekeepers who used them lost around 50% of their hives in one winter.Any veterinary treatment that had even a 10th of that death rate would never make it on the market.
 

Otto

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Dunedin
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I would love to use oxalic strips but first I want to know why many very experienced beekeepers who used them lost around 50% of their hives in one winter.Any veterinary treatment that had even a 10th of that death rate would never make it on the market.
Not an easy question to answer!
There are quite a few potential variables in the system and for any particular beekeeper it could have been caused by one or a combination of several. Some possible contributors are:
1) Placement of strips. For experienced beekeepers this shouldn't really be something that comes into it but based on photos and comments on the previous forum I think it is. My experience is that the staples need to be in amongst the brood (much like with another sort of strip). This is especially important for late season treatment when broodnests are contracting. I think there are some beekeepers who tried putting strips more towards the edge of the broodnest in spring and it worked fine (as the hives expanded into those areas anyway), then expected it to work the same in autumn and it didn't...
2) Treatments being put in too late/ too much varroa in hives prior to treatment. Early on with varroa you could usually rescue a mite-riddled hive late in the season with bayvarol or apistan. That is much less the case now and (again in my experience) oxalic staples will not rescue a hive with severe mite infestation/damage. It is critical to never let mites get too much of a foothold. Again, in spring it is relatively easy to rescue a badly infested hive by treating and adding healthy bees and/or brood from another hive but this is more difficult in autumn.
3) Insufficient treatment amounts/time. This is a little more vague and I think needs the beekeeper to spend some time with oxalic staples as a treatment option. I've explained how I use mine elsewhere so won't go through that again. I don't view staples as a put in and forget about treatment option though. It is best to check the hives around 3 weeks after treating to make sure they are still in the right place and haven't been excessively chewed out. They can easily be renewed/replaced if necessary.
4) Staples made up incorrectly. While I think they're relatively easy to make up, they are not an off the shelf ready to use product. This means there is room for mistakes, misinterpretation etc.

If I had to guess my money would mostly be on the second point. It is easy to look at a hive in late summer that is full of bees and think it's fine when actually it is about to collapse. Most of us have seen this happen to hives at some point. I think the margins for error here are less forgiving now than they were in the early days of varroa.

My advice to any commercial beekeeper thinking of trying them is to pick an apiary close to home and take the plunge. Be prepared to visit more regularly so you can make some observations, do some monitoring etc. I think a treatment regime of putting fresh staples in early spring, early summer and early autumn should work in nearly all situations...
 
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Southland
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Hi @southbee We have been considering using it. If you are vaporizing in the winter do you restrict your use to certain day temperatures or do you use it no matter what the day/night temperature. Sorry if this has been covered elsewhere. Also hubby said where did you buy your vaporizer from? Thanks
We have been using the vaporiser at any temp, we got it from nz beeswax.
 
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Reactions: Fieldbee (Mary)
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North Canterbury
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Great post @Otto and bang on the money, also I agree, we have all posted the details of OX treatment experiences and experiments as we were trying them in real time so no need to re post them all again.
getting it right with staples takes time and experience but once you have figured out the details it can be so effective it makes it frustrating to hear of other beekeepers having mite issues again and again.
synthetic treatments twice a year with the “rise and fall, rise and fall” mite cycle doesn’t exist with this method and constant lower numbers effectively flattening the population growth curve and keeping it there... where it should be.. suppressed.
Not everyone wants to keep their fingers on the pulse and I understand that, do anything long enough and the passion can wear off and fade into a monotonous blur..
for those I’d say carry on.. as you were.
If there’s still a bit of fiz left in the sting why not explore some fresh options, you may be surprised.
 


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