Varroa Mite Australia: When to Treat Your Hives for Varroa Mite in Australia

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As Australian beekeepers grapple with the pervasive challenge of Varroa mites, Dr. Mark Goodwin's insights provide a thoughtful exploration of the critical factor that often determines treatment efficacy: when to treat your bee hives for varroa mite in austrlia.

The video sheds light on the different approaches taken by beekeepers around the world based on their unique climates and honey flow patterns, offering valuable lessons for the Australian audience.

Understanding Varroa Treatment Timing:

Dr. Goodwin begins by addressing the pivotal question for Australian beekeepers: when to administer Varroa treatments. He highlights the ease with which colder climates, such as Canada and Northern Europe, manage Varroa. In these regions, a single treatment during autumn proves effective due to the harsh winter conditions that naturally control mite populations. The absence of brood during winter minimizes Varroa infestations, simplifying the treatment schedule.

Challenges for Temperate Locations:

For temperate locations like New Zealand and certain parts of Australia, where distinct spring and autumn seasons exist, the Varroa treatment scenario becomes slightly more complex. Dr. Goodwin suggests a regimen of two treatments per year – one in spring and another in autumn – each lasting eight weeks. While not as straightforward as in colder climates, this approach aligns with the seasonal dynamics of these regions.

Navigating Australia's Diverse Climates:

The complexity intensifies for Australian beekeepers, especially in tropical climates with prolonged honey flows. Dr. Goodwin acknowledges the uncertainty surrounding the optimal timing for treatments in these regions. Traditional calendar-based treatments may not suffice, leading him to propose an alternative approach – integrated control programs.

Integrated Control Programs: A New Paradigm for Australia:

Recognizing the challenges posed by extended honey flows in tropical climates, Dr. Goodwin introduces the concept of integrated control programs. These programs involve employing multiple Varroa control methods simultaneously, deviating from the conventional calendar treatments. While cold countries may thrive on a single treatment, temperate regions adopt a two-treatment approach, but Australia's diverse climates might necessitate a more dynamic and multifaceted strategy.


Dr. Mark Goodwin's insights provide Australian beekeepers with a roadmap for navigating the complexities of Varroa mite treatments. By acknowledging the diverse climates within the country and considering integrated control programs, beekeepers can tailor their approaches to effectively manage Varroa infestations during extended honey flows. This thoughtful consideration of timing and treatment methods is pivotal for maintaining the health and productivity of bee colonies across the vast and varied landscapes of Australia.