Soil dwelling predatory mite Stratiolaelaps scimitusThis mite is known to feed on the Varroa mite which creates lots of issues in Honeybee colonies around the globe. Most beekeepers treat their colonies against Varroa mites and by doing so they are very likely killing off all the other beneficial mites, microbes and yeasts within the colony. One thing is sure, treatments are not efficient because varroa is still a huge issue in the world.
This video pretty much sums up that treated hives dont do well in comparison to the hives where Stratiolaelaps scimitus was introduced. Is it possible that this mite or other native mites can actually control Varroa much better than our conventional Varroa treatments? I feel it is, but we must understand that the bee colony is not just made of Workers, Drones and a Queen but also of micro-organisms and that treatments (even soft ones) will cause unbalanced conditions.
Bio Control for Varroa Mite from Electric Dreams Video on Vimeo.
Phil Chandler the author of The Barefoot Beekeeper is experimenting with the so called Eco-Floors in his hives. These are simply deep floors under the bees filled with aged wood chips which contain all sorts of micro-organisms. This is still work in progress but it seems that such eco-floor can provide proper environment for other micro-organisms which could start feeding on Varroa.