Formic acid on its own, does not cause anything. It is the application and concentration of it which causes all known problems. In Design of MiteGone we eliminated all these problems.
When you hear someone telling the horror stories; ask what application and concentration he used. See: HOW MITEGONE WORKS
From scientific research in Dowson creek research centre; the 65%concentration is most effective and least harmful. Because Formic acid is a molecular substance and only at 72% molecules of water and acid evaporates equally. At highest concentration the extra molecules of acid must evaporate first causing a 100% acid blasts over dose, and that is cause of all problems. At lover concentration molecules of water must evaporate first and at 72% acid molecules starts to evaporate together with water. There fore the hives cannot get over dose in MiteGone application. In top or bottom applications bees do not control temperature and blast will occur.
Generally, authorities agree that Formic Acid kills mites in a way that the mites should not become resistant to. In lay terms, if you hit a mite with a hammer, there is no way the mite can become resistant to it; therefore, keep hitting the mite with acid. The acid will kill 70-80% of the mites being born in each generation. Treating with acid long enough will treat high infestation levels.
Use more pads but reduce the evaporation surface that will extend the length of treatment See: TREATMENT MODIFICATION.
Eventually mites may develop a resistance; however, after sixty years of use in Europe, no resistance has yet developed. Until scientists agree on how exactly Formic acid kills mites, they will not be able to pin down what physiological changes in the mites would be necessary to bring about resistance to Formic acid. They agree that resistance in the near future is very unlikely.
Queen losses and damage to the hive were observed with blast methods and the use of 85% acid and in colonies with old queens. With the use of 65% acid and a continuous low dose release method, we have experienced no young queen losses due to Formic Acid applications since 1995. Keep in mind that you should go into winter with new queens. It guarantees the best wintering results; as we have.
Mitegone® kills mites slowly, therefore tests before and immediately after treatment may be very misleading. Only drop tests before treatments in the spring and late summer will tell you how well your last treatment worked. Depending on the application method, other treatments can provide a “reduction” or efficacy of 70-80%. MiteGone® reached 95-100% efficacy in tests in recent years and can, with two treatments a year, keep mites below the 8-10 mites’ economic damage threshold level. See: Testing Charts since 2002 in the Testing, and ZERO MITE tests 2006 to 2010.
Formic acid is believed to act as an asphyxicant. However, one German researcher believes the Formic acid fumes kill the mites (but not the bees) because the mites’ exoskeletons or skins are much thinner than that of the bees, allowing the fumes to penetrate their bodies. We know it breaks or damages their foot cups so they fall off and die in the pool of heavy fumes on the bottom board. We also learned that those who survive become sterile and do not reproduce. They get sick and eventually die.
MiteGone® method Lasts over 3 caped brood cycles so it waits until mites get out than it kills and make them sic without causing any damage.
In the case of Tracheal mites, the mites are killed in the Tracheal tubes of adult bees. There are no Tracheal mites present in the brood.
There are products claiming to kill mites in caped cells. In scientific test they were found killing the brood too and be harsh on bees. They shod be used in honey flow when the bees can recover from damage, it was said it is fair exchange for reasonable treatment? Do not use it in late summer It may kill your winter brood.
No you cannot put the pads on top of the frames because the capillary tube and gravity principle will not work in the horizontal direction. The bees will chew up the pad and glue it up with propolis. It can result in over heating blast and kill colony.
We ran specific tests of this application in 2000 with the application of MiteGone®on the top of frames, concluding that such placement does not work.
It is now recommended;
In temperate climates, start the fall treatment as early as August. Read: When to Treat. The outside temperature will not affect the MiteGone® applicator. At that time, Kelowna’s temperature reaches highs of 30 degrees Celsius or 90 degrees Fahrenheit; this temperature did not affect the success of the treatment. Apply the pads to the hives in the early morning or late afternoon to avoid the midday heat.
Yes. It is now standard application.
There are countries in Europe, such as Denmark, that have used only Formic acid for mite control. Organophosphates, such as Check Mite, and parathyroid’s, such as Apistan, are not allowed in beehives. With resistance to Man-made pesticides, acid is now successfully used twice a year In our operation since 2006 resulting in virtually zero mites.
It is not necessary to remove the pads in Fall. We leave pads in from late summer to spring. When we reuse them by re-cutting the evaporation surfaces and re-soaking in acid, it is the best way to reuse pads. (See Reuse of Pads).
IN spring, after the acid evaporates, the bees will chew up most of the pad and throw it out of the hive. If there is pad remaining in the hive, you simply remove it the next time you work the hive or by the end of May.
MITEGONE is very flexible. The rate of evaporation is directly related to the size of the evaporating surface. One pad 4’’ wide delivers 6 gr. Per day. To make a pad to reduce amount of acid evaporated all you have to do is to wrap the pad into plastic tape and staple it to wall of top brood box or baby nuk. Reducing the evaporating surface to half extend treatment twice. How? See Treatment Modfication
A four frame nuclei in half a standard box will do well with one pad. For baby nukes, hang it up in PVC 2”or 3” tape. Staple the Tape to the top of box. It will last 60 -100days.How? See Treatment Modfication
As long as these entrance “gadgets” like; entrance reducers, pollination gates, and pollen inserts do not fully restrict the entrance and ventilation, they can be used. We recommend their use to create a “tray” out of the bottom board collecting and retaining the heavy acid fumes; they are actually beneficial to the treatment as mites that fall to the bottom board also fall into a pool of heavily concentrated acid fumes and die there. The slanted wooden pollen insert is ideal for this function. Screened bottoms with monitoring trays spread with 50/50 petroleum jelly and cooking oil are great traps. Surpassingly fully open screen bottoms on raised stands do report good treatment? As mites fall down to sand they get eaten by ants.
Yes. If any man-made pesticide is still working to control Varroa mites, Formic acid and MiteGone® shall be used in the spring to control Tracheal mites at the same time, while killing surviving Varroa, preventing re-infestation and postponing resistance. I will not use COUMAPOSE or OXALIC ACID as their crystals contaminate hives.
If you use any type of shear to cut the pad you may tear the wrapping and you will crush the pad destroying the ends of the capillary tubes preventing effective evaporation of acid. The cutting box acts as a guide for your knife allowing you to easily cut the pad at the right place and avoid damaging the pad. Be sure that you are cutting the pad with a sharp blade. Do not move the blade up and down.
The easiest way is to hang it in 1” Surveyor tape How? See Treatment modification You can staple pads to the walls of the super or, use paper clips! Unwrap a standard metal clip to form an open cornered rectangle.
Pin the pad by the short end of the opened paper clip to the comb while wrapping the long end of the paper clip around the top bar.
In subtropical climates, select the driest period for treatment. For example, in Florida, the best time to treat is mid-October and in mid-May. A Tropical climate is the same but you may extend the treatment to the entire year. See tropical instructions.