- The following was taken from the Abstract of the above ten-page paper published in Research in Veterinary Science, Volume 144, May 2022, Pages 1-10. Three formic acid treatments were recommended, and the beekeepers were permitted to use the one of their choice.
For full details of the treatments used refer to Paragraph 2.3. V in the paper which can be accessed here: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0034528821003696
Thirty beekeepers were enrolled in a longitudinal study in three cantons in Switzerland and they monitored the management and health of their colonies for two years. Compliance was assessed with mite control recommendations and measured V. destructor infestation rates, colony productivity (brood size and honey harvest), and colony mortality in 300 colonies. An observed 10-fold increased risk of colony death occurred when beekeepers deviated slightly from the recommended treatment regimen compared to compliant beekeepers. The risk of colony death increased 25- fold in apiaries with substantial deviations from the recommendations.
Thanks to David Parker and Claire Balla for drawing our attention to this paper in which there are grave warnings for not treating varroa properly.
This is a long paper and does not make particularly easy reading. However, the core of the materials and treatments can be found in sections 2.1 and 2.3, and the results in section 3 and its sub-sections. It has been suggested that as this work was carried out in Switzerland, the formic acid treatments described may not have the approval of our authorities in the UK, but the general principle of compliance with recommendations is relevant.
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