Image reference: 10640027
A Honey bee s in a hive still active in November. A strong hive is generally not affected too badly by the varroa mite but when the hives population reduces in preparation for winter or through poor late autumn food supplies the varroa mites can overwhelm a hive. The most dangerous times for hives is autumn and spring. Beekeepers generally treat the bees for the mite in autumn but although treatment helps there is a very real risk that many hives will be lost if the mild weather continues. Queen bees cease laying once the cold weather arrives as do the varroa mites. The female varroa mite breeds by entering an uncapped cell and laying several eggs into the developing bee larva. The gestation period of bee matches that of the varroa mite. Once the young bee hatches the newly hatched mites spread to other bees and larvae.