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Thread: MAQS Bee Murder

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Sherburne, MN, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default MAQS Bee Murder

    Yes, I know, I know, I shouldn't use miticides or anything in my hive but I purchased some bees from a guy who told me to treat for varroa and I did, but to my horror MAQS seemed to kill my bees. I left the treatment in the hive for an hour and I went out to see how they were doing and there were a dozen or so bees on the bottom boards of my two hives dead or in the process of dying. When I first placed the strips in the hive, the bees quickly scurried away and were very upset, making a very noticeable displeased hum. I did everything the instructions advised me to do so I know that it wasn't operational error. I guess the point I'm trying to make is- this can't be normal. I've tried contacting the company but all I got was a "please leave a message" and so I tried calling my experienced beekeeping friend who sold me the bees. He wasn't home so I decided while I wait I might as well ask you all. I removed the strips as soon as I noticed this problem and I did a mite count a day prior- 13 varroa in one hive and 7 in another for a daily drop. I realize that this number may not have been high enough to treat but I couldn't find anything in my books or online which advised me as to what number was the treatment threshold. Could one of you please tell me this as well? Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Baytown, TX., USA.
    Posts
    651

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    A long read but your answer is in the bottom of this article. Good luck and don't shoot till you have read this.

    http://scientificbeekeeping.com/figh...mite-sampling/
    Julysun elevation 23 feet. 4 Hives, 2 years.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Polk Co, Oregon, USA
    Posts
    53

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    MAQS work great. If you vent your hives by removing reducers and putting spacers between boxes, use at the cooler end of the temp range, place at the top of your hive instead of between boxes, remove after seven days and above all; they are two pads to a package but look like one so it is easy to double-dose. That last one, because I was half asleep at the time I treated this spring, forced me to do splits early. The MAQS biggest issue seems to be queen issues for most. I did tons or research before using them to come up with the adapted instructions, still well within labeling, and still blew it because I did not pay attention.

    Until this last time, they worked great and I will use them again but won't ever make the same mistake again.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Sherburne, MN, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    Thanks for the tips. There were no reducers, although I didn't put vents between boxes. It was about 88 degrees when I placed them in the hive. I didn't double dose, I only used one packet. The bees seem to be doing great now that it's out. I will think about other treatment options and rethink this one. I don't know what went wrong and I appreciate the helpful advice. I am still curious, however, if this has happened to anyone else? Thanks in advance.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Posts
    1,645

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    I killed a lot of bees with them too. My temps where just like yours in the upper range of what they say is safe. I've since switched to Apigaurd it has a wider temp range and haven't had any problems.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Polk Co, Oregon, USA
    Posts
    53

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    Yeah, my looking into MAQS before use was clear in that they are not good at their labeled upper temp range. Also, some venting is extremely important between boxes. The folks that make MAQS would do a much better service tweaking their instructions some. I would go so far as to say using them at 90 degrees in a box with just an entrance most often would kill the hive. But in Oregon, I can use them in 50-60 degrees in early spring and they are fantastic.

    You can also use one strip instead of two to knock mites back. This works well.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Johnson City, TN
    Posts
    380

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    I have never had a problem with them. I also have screened bottom boards, they stress the importance of ventilation, removing the entrance reducer is minimum ventilation according to what they have said in their Q and A on the website. It also says to make sure your colony is in order or in other words strong enough for treatment. That it would kill some brood the first three days, but it would return to normal after treatment. It's hard to say without actually being there, but I tend to think ventilation from what I am hearing?
    All beekeepers can agree on one thing, and that one thing is, that all beekeepers can't agree on one thing.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Garland, Bladen County, NC, USA
    Posts
    2,990

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    I use MAQS in the fall. I have never had a problem with it. Just make sure you have 6 frames of bees in the hive, if not it is too weak for the MAQS.

    88 degrees is getting mighty close to the max, by oct we have highs in the 70's. This will be my third year using it, seems to be quite effective.
    “Don’t tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you have travelled.” - The Quran

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,991

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    It's very hard to get formic acid dosing right MAQS is a form of formic acid. Temperature and humidity are important factors, as is the strength of the hive and amount of ventilation.

    When I dose with formic I use a high dose 24 hour treatment and accept that I'll lose some bees, I'll normally lose a cupful or two per hive, and over the next few days they will also likely pull out some dead brood, along with maybe some dead wax moth larvae. The plus side is that it seems to have a stimulative effect on the hive, a couple of weeks later the hive looks nice & clean, happy bees working hard & good brood patterns.

    It sounds like you only left the MAQS in for an hour? If so, this will not do the job. What I do is when I treat, if it seems overpowering for the bees I'll increase ventilation but leave the treatment in. You can lose some bees but the sacrifice is worth it for the many.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Manning, SC
    Posts
    2,116

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    When I dose with formic I use a high dose 24 hour treatment
    OT.....Just 24 hours and you pull them out?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Garland, Bladen County, NC, USA
    Posts
    2,990

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    Quote Originally Posted by snl View Post
    OT.....Just 24 hours and you pull them out?
    If so then he must be using one of the other several versions of Formic treatments. That's not MAQS.
    “Don’t tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you have travelled.” - The Quran

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Manning, SC
    Posts
    2,116

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    That's what I was thinking Herb......
    http://OxaVap.com
    Your source for the Varrox Vaporizer, "One of the highest ranked" by R. Oliver

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,991

    Default Re: MAQS Bee Murder

    Yes I don't use MAQS I use a formic acid fume board, it's a different system, a 24 hour shot strong enough to penetrate brood cells & kill mites within the brood.

    MAQS is slower and gentler, however initially MAQS can be pretty strong also, mainly due to that formic acid volatility, if temperature is a bit high, or ventilation not enough, MAQS can kill bees also, but likely just a few, not the hive.

    When bees first emerge from the cell, their exoskeleton takes a few hours to toughen up. During these first few hours they are especially vulnerable to formic acid, and most bees killed will be these few hours old ones. Plus any with DWV which seem to keel over with any whiff of formic acid.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

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