July 24, 2015 Beekeepers Meeting

93 Persons in attendance


Called to Order by: President Giles Berrier


Invocation was given by: Aaron Ferguson

Speaker was:    Greg Fariss, NC Bee Inspector

His Presentation was On:    “Varroa Mites and Oxalic Acid”

Varroa mite originated in Asia.  They are also found on bumble bees but only reproduce in honey bee colonies.  If you see varroa mites on your bees, you have a very bad infestation which could lead to your colony collapsing. Infestations can be cause by drones drifting, bees robbing a weak hive, a worker from another hive with a load of nectar and pollen, and by us moving frames from one hive to another.  Mites prefer drone cells to reproduce because of their longer development time.  Varroa transfers roughly 24 viruses.  Sac brood, deformed wing, chronic bee paralysis, and bee parasite syndrome to name a few.  Test for varroa mites in the Spring and in August to see if any treatment is needed.  Test methods include ether, sticky board, alcohol, or sugar shake.


Control Options:


No Chemical – thru genetics, drone trapping, breaking brood cycle, small cell comb, powder sugar, hive in the

                         sun and screen bottom boards.

Hard Chemicals –  Apistan, Apivar, Checkmite.  These chemicals will go into wax and don’t come out.

Soft Chemicals – Formic Acid, Api Life Var, Oxalic Acid.


Oxalic Acid is organic and won’t go into the wax.  It is found naturally in honey.  Use common sense and follow label instructions including precautions with the use of goggles, protective gloves, long sleeved shirt and long pants, socks and shoes, half-face respirator, and lots of water incase of a spill.  You can apply using the vapor or spray/trickle method.  The vapor method takes it from a solid to a gas.  You will need to seal bottom board and entrance. The spray/trickle method requires you to mix the suggested crystals with a 1:1 sugar syrup.  Then trickle 5 ml per seam of bees between frames.  Use a maximum of 50 ml per a hive.  Measure solid crystals exactly by weight.


Treatment is most effective when you have no sealed brood.  As with most treatments, the queen may stop laying temporarily.  You could have some open brood and adult bees to die.  However, a small amount of bee deaths compared to the amount the mites would kill.  Not sure if the varroa will develop a resistance to Oxalic Acid, so it’s important to continue rotating treatments.  A good source of information is the website scientificbeekeeping.com by Randy Oliver.

Secretary & Treasury Report

We had 20 members in attendance at Lake Junaluska summer conference.  We add two new members tonight.  New Bern is the location of the Spring conference next year.


Cabarrus County fair is coming up September 11-19.  No liability insurance is provided by the fair.  After taking quotes, United Cabarrus Insurance Company has quoted us a policy for $266.00 annually.  Stan Frick made a motion for us to purchase this policy. The motion was second by Karl Hesse.  It was voted on and passed. 


Gene Furr and Don Morris is negotiating set-up fee for our new caps.  We have new posters for the fair and educational events.

Bob’s Hive Report

Bees are hanging out due to the heat and no rain, not happy.  Work your bees slower and use more smoke.  They need water and so do you.  Bees are on hummingbird feeders.  Add mineral salt to water to attract your bees. 

Bob’s Flower Report

Crepe Myrtle, the white ones for pollen.  Sunflowers for pollen, Red Mexican Torch, White Clover, Kudzu, Beggar Lice, Boneset, Mountain Mint, Star Thistle


Door Prizes



6-Egg Plants, 2-Bags of Candy, Bee Soap,

 Door Mat, Bottle of Honey, S’mores Pie



Please let me know of any Beekeepers who are sick or in the hospital.