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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Areawide Project 2014 - California
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Purpose of the Areawide Project: Determine population increase of Varroa in commercial colonies and test for the effects of mite immigration into colonies


Background: In 2012-2013, we measured Varroa population growth in colonies started from package bees. We applied miticide treatments (HopGuard) to determine if we could maintain low mite populations throughout the year. We were successful until the fall when mite populations were much larger  than expected. We suspect that mite migration into colonies might be greater than previously thought, and could be causing colonies to have large mite populations even if mite numbers were low throughout the summer (see linked PDF for the complete story on the study). To test this, we established apiaries in Tucson and in California (Gene Brandi Apiaries) to determine mite population growth and measure mite migration. We will update you on the results of this study on this site.


To view our Tucson colonies click here.



Gene Brandi's colonies at a Driscoll's berry farm in Central California  



Mona Chambers and Geoffrey Hidalgo performing colony evaluations



Mona Chambers performing pupa pulls to record varrao mite infestation levels in brood cells

Last Modified: 8/13/2016
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