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How to Use Green Drone Frames for Varroa Management

Green Drone frames are a one piece plastic frame imprinted with a larger cell pattern to encourage the worker bees to make drone comb. Varroa mites prefer drone comb over worker comb due to the fact drone cells are capped 4 days longer than worker brood, enabling them to produce more offspring. As part of your Integrated Pest Management practices, drone frames can be an integral part of staying ahead of a mite infestation, thus lessening the need for mite treatments.

How To:
  1. Place one drone frame in each hive in frame position 3.
  2. Leave for 2-3 weeks - (Drone brood is 24 days from egg to emergence.)
  3. Remove the frame “before” drone brood emerges to prevent a “mite bomb” in your hive – counterproductive to the method approach.
  4. Freeze the frame overnight. Remove and warm to room temperature.
  5. Drag your capping scratcher across the cells, breaking them open, then place the frame back in the hive for the worker bees to clean out the dead drones and mites.
  6. Repeat the cycle as the bees refill and cap cells.

Photo Credit: University of Arkansas

Photo Credit: Trunch Beekeeping Group


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