Varroa have arrived...
Back at the hives this past weekend to remove a drone frame that was found in the honey supers. After the removal & shaking the bees off in front of the hive, we noticed all the Varroa mites on the frame. They started coming out of the cells after sitting for a bit.
Can you see the tiny red dots...that's Varroa. They attack the drone bees the most because of their size. They're the biggest bees...next to the queen of course.
This is just another view of the comb. This is a foundation-less frame that we put in the hive. Our goal is to let the bees build all their own comb. They like to build comb & it helps with the maintenance of the bees. Over time the bees will reduce in size & hopefully they will be of less value to the Varroa, along with being stronger bees.
As a group, we have decided that we are NOT going to chemically treat our bees. We don't want any chemicals building up in our hives, bees or wax & therefore we have an uphill battle to climb. We have a plan of attack that we will document on the our blog. Stay tuned to see if we are successful...if not, we start again. But sustainable mite control is all we can progress with.