- Written by Steve Parise
The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets has received a Section 18 Emergency Use Permit from EPA for the product: HopGuard™ (potassium salt of hop beta acids) for the control of varroa mites in honey bee colonies.
Strips must be applied at the rate of one strip per five deep combs covered with bees in each brood super or for example, two strips per ten frame brood chamber. Each strip is composed of cardboard, treated with the active ingredient, and hinged in the middle, so that the folded strip will hang over the top bar and extend down on each side of one frame. Strips must be placed only in brood chambers (not in the honey supers).
Most colonies in Vermont going into winter will use 2 folded strips in the lower brood chamber where the bees are forming the winter cluster. The two strips should be placed in the middle of the cluster, and approximately 4 inches apart. For optimal results, little or no brood should be present in the hive, which makes the late fall period a very good time to treat.
According to the literature supplied by Mann Lake, the U.S. distributor of HopGuard™, it is made with all food grade ingredients; gentle on bees with no negative effects on normal hive activity. HopGuard™ may be used in the spring, summer or fall, but is most effective when little or no brood is present in hives. The use directions (see attachment) must be in the possession of the user at the time of application.