Oxalic Acid Shop Towels

Randy Oliver’s oxalic shop towels

Randy Oliver is testing the effectiveness of oxalic acid soaked shop towels against varroa mites. And has some new results.

This approach appears promising for anyone who wants to effectively treat for varroa without contaminating the bees, equipment or the environment.

It’s simple. Blue shop towels, containing oxalic acid dissolved in glycerin and water, are put above the broodnest.

Distributing oxalic acid this way, provides a longer term exposure, with less labor, than either dribbling or evaporating. And it should be safer to apply.

This concept is not a new idea. Decades ago, food grade mineral oil and essential oils were distributed this way. And a Canadian oxalic evaporator manufacturer, offered oxalic soaked strips which resemble Randy’s shop towels. But they were never tested.

For decades, seeing saturated blue shop towels inside a hive, was a sure indication that a beekeeper was up to no good. They usually contained some witch’s brew concocted from barnyard chemicals, dissolved in a big dose of ignorance. And that usually guaranteed contaminated equipment, pesticide tolerant mites, and a less than healthy beekeeper.

It will take someone who is honest, bright, selfless, and community focused to clean up beekeeping’s disgraceful blue shop towel legacy. If it can be done, Randy Oliver is the guy who can do it. And we’ll all benefit from it.

Thanks Randy for your work. And thanks for sharing.


Scroll to top