Bee inspector advice on usage of oxalic acid and MAQs

Ealing member Brian Mitchison recently received advice from National Bee Unit Regional Bee Inspector Julian Parker on the use of OXALIC ACID if you’ve used MAQs strips. 

“It is unwise for beekeepers to use oxalic acid treatments if they have already treated the same (winter) bees with formic acid (MAQS – Mite Away Quick Strips) as this would effectively be a double dose of organic acid. It matters little that one is formic and the other oxalic – the method of action is the same and a second application of either applied to the same winter bees risks high adult bee mortality through a double dose of organic acid burning the bees. The bees can only tolerate so much acid treatment before it burns them lethally, much like the mites. Queen loss would also be a concern.

Any treatments applied to a colony should be recorded on a veterinary medicines record card as bees are considered to be food-producing livestock.”

Julian Parker
Regional Bee Inspector, South Eastern England, National Bee Unit

The Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) regularly review their position regarding bee medicines and treatments. While this is currently the correct interpretation of their guidance, it may change as other products come to the market. Please keep updated on current usage and guidance on the VMD website.

Story sent by Brian Mitchison.

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