It is February 18th as we write this with most of our BIP commercial operations in almonds. The weather has been perfect for sampling and as far as we know, none of our teams have been stuck in the mud. They’ve been extremely busy going through colonies in CA, TX and FL. The Maryland Lab is working on overdrive to process thousands of samples, turning them around in time to be able to make near real time management changes.
January averages for varroa were at 0.70 mites/100 bees from all the teams and are holding at 0.51 mites/100 bees thus far in February. Those bees coming from the Midwest have seen the highest mites, but they are still well below the economic threshold. Nosema seemed to spike in January, with averages from all tech teams at 1.33 billion spores/bee but are now down at an average of 0.89.
Acknowledging and accepting that every year is a different year for beekeeping, having the flexibility to roll with the punches, learning from mistakes and staying on top of an operation is another key to a successful operation. The only thing that is constant, is change….and varroa mites.