North American Mite-A-Thon: April 30th-May 15th & August 13th-28th

The Mite-A-Thon is a North American effort to collect Varroa mite infestation data in honey bee colonies. All beekeepers can easily participate by testing their hives for mites, creating a rich distribution of sampling sites in Canada, the United States, and Mexico. This initiative has provided a platform for beekeepers’ associations to engage newer members and re-familiarize long-time members with proper Varroa monitoring techniques. It has also opened the conversation on treatment practices, initiating a dialogue between beekeepers.

Visit to submit data.

Download Mite-A-Thon Flyer

OBJECTIVE: 1) To raise awareness about honey bee colony Varroa infestations in North America through effective monitoring methods. 2) Management strategies will be made available for discussion within bee organizations utilizing Mite-A-Thon partner developed information and outreach materials.


Spring: April 30th-May 15th, 2022

Summer: August 13th-28th, 2022

PARTICIPANTS: All beekeepers in North America are encouraged to participate

COST: There is no cost. You can create your own test materials or kits can be purchased online and at your local bee supply store.

OUTREACH: Promotion of Mite-A-Thon will be through local bee clubs, state beekeeping organizations, and national associations (see partners for examples)

DATA COLLECTION: Participants will monitor the level of mites (number of mites per 100 bees) using a standardized protocol utilizing two common methods of assessment (alcohol wash or powdered sugar roll) and then enter data, including location, total number of hives, number of hives tested, local habitat, and the number of Varroa mites counted from each hive. The published information will not identify individual participants.

Tips: Due to potential shortage of isopropyl alcohol caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we have heard from some of our experts that winter-grade windshield wiper fluid (methyl hydrate) works as well and may be easier to obtain. Thanks to Meghan Milbrath (Michigan State University), Peter Armitage (Newfoundland and Labrador Beekeeping Association), and Geoff Wilson (Saskatchewan Provincial Apiarist) for the advice.

SPONSORS: Sponsorships are being solicited to underwrite costs and grants, as necessary.

CONTACT: or 415-362-1137

TO DO: Determine your preferred method of testing for mites and commit to a day for testing, either individually or through beekeeping organizations, and report your data (see above).

Submit Your Data

Final Analysis Reports:

2021 Mite-A-Thon Report

2020 Mite-A-Thon Report

2019 Mite-A-Thon Final Analysis Report
2017 and 2018 Mite-A-Thon Analysis Report

Email with any questions.