Quite “bee”hind on posting about our first year beekeeping, we will try and give high points to an unfortunately eventful summer for our hives. We added the new colonies to our hives with the help of Super Sam, our bee mentor. They seemed happy and thriving and we couldn’t have been more excited to see the colonies grow!
Early July, Lucy found a Varroa mite on one of the brood while we were checking the hives. Knowing these tiny guys could take down the colony, we took the wax cells to our up-close-lab and looked under our microscope for what we would never have seen with our unassisted eyes. We found about 15 mites in a single brood cell. Eggs, newly emerged mites and adult mites as well. We treated both hives the following day with Mite Away, knowing untreated, the infestation would worsen. After a week for the treatment and a few more days of waiting, we conducted a ‘sugar roll’ test, and found that the treatment was successful – the mites were gone.
These are some of the photos of the new colonies being moved to their new homes along with images we captured of the Varroa mites along with a link to a great video on how Varroa mites exist within a hive.
And then… July hit. May we introduce you to the varroa mite: