Varroa 6
Monitoring for varroa in December
In the first week in December all colonies are treated with oxalic acid by the trickle method (as described in Varroa 3 in the menu above) and the resulting mite drop for each colony monitored over a 5 day period.
The total number of mites found in each colony is shown above the respective column.

Also shown to the left of the results is a smaller bar chart which shows the percentage mite drop each day over the 5 day period.
What is perhaps surprising is how these charts for the past 3 years are remarkably similar. About 80% of the total mite drop occurs in the first 2 days showing how effective the oxalic acid is.
mite percentage dec 2014
Varroa count oxalic acid
December 2014
The bar chart on the right shows the results for 18 colonies in December 2014.
What was really surprising this year was generally the relatively high mite count compared to the two previous years. These results to some extent mirror the results found in August when the colonies were treated with formic acid.

What also appears to be surprising was the high mite counts for colonies 01, 02, 04, 13, 14, and 17 especially when these had been treated in August.

Perhaps the good weather experienced this summer and autumn provides the answer.
Were the mites able to have more brood cycles?
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mite count dec 2016
mite percentage dec 2016
mite percentage dec 2015
mite drop nov 2016
Varroa count oxalic acid
November 2015
The 18 colonies were further monitored over a 5 day period in late November just prior to treatment with oxalic acid. What is perhaps surprising is the fact that mites are still dropping even in this late season. This is explained when the results shown below are considered.




December 2015
The bar chart on the right shows the mite drop after treatment with oxalic acid.
Considering the fact that the mite count this year after treatment with formic acid in August was relatively low. A result that could be accounted for by the poor summer when monthly temperatures were well below the norm. This mite count was expected to again be on the low side.
However, the results are full of surprises. The amount of varroa in some colonies was very much higher than expected.
The scale of the the chart is the same as for that in 2014. So this year there was a significant increase in the varroa count. How to account for this? The temperatures this year for the summer months were lower than the average. Only in October and November were they above the norm. Perhaps the queen continued to lay longer this year hence an increased number of brood cycles for the mite?
Varroa count oxalic acid
November 2016
15 colonies were monitored over a 5 day period in late November just prior to treatment with oxalic acid. What is perhaps surprising in this instance is the relative small count for some colonies.






December 2016
The bar chart on the right shows the mite drop after treatment with oxalic acid on a daily basis. In view of the fact that these colonies were not treated with formic acid in August. it was not surprising that some colonies showed a relatively high mite count.