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Week Seven: Disease in Bee hives - your legal obligations (New Zealand)
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Week Seven: Disease in Bee hives - your legal obligations (New Zealand)


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This describes the types of diseases you can get in bee hives here in NZ - and your legal obligations when you become a bee keeper

This describes the types of diseases you can get in bee hives here in NZ - and your legal obligations when you become a bee keeper

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  • 1. Week Seven – Legal obligations & Disease in Hives Dara K. Dimitrov
  • 2. Varroa Mite  Infestation causes  Decreased brood  Deformed bees  Hive becomes weak very quickly
  • 3. Varroa Mite  Spreads quickly  Travels with swarms  Migrating drones  Movement with infested equipment
  • 4. You HAVE to treat for Varroa Mite  On-going inspection of the hives for Varroa mite  Treatment for Varroa mite – twice a year  In the spring  In the autumn  Placing strips into the hives (2 strips per brood box)  Alternate between different chemical strips so that the mite does not become resistant to the chemicals
  • 5. Varroa Mite – Chemical Strips  Apistan  Apivar  Bayvarol  You remove the honey supers – and place the strips into the hives  They stay there for a minimum of 4 weeks – usually 6 weeks  You need to check to see if the strips worked
  • 6. American Foul Brood  Caused by a spore forming bacteria called Paenibacillus larvae  It is present in almost all hives where honey bees are found  AFB was found in NZ 1877 – 38 years after honey bees were introduced to NZ
  • 7. American Foulbrood  The hive often dies off within the season  It is strictly monitored in NZ –  It is illegal to treat with antibiotics or drugs in beehives in New Zealand  Shook swarming is illegal in NZ
  • 8. Diagnosis of AFB  Smell – similar to dead fish smell (hence the name) but should not be relied upon to diagnosis AFB  Brood ropiness test – larvae and the pupae has a classic ropiness when you use a match stick – slightly stir the tissue – and then slowly remove the stick – classic ropiness
  • 9. AFB - diagnosis  The brood pattern  The brood itself  The pupae  The colour of the brood  The cappings of the brood
  • 10. Bee Keepers Must  Treat your hives for mite regularly before checking for AFB  Don’t feed frames of honey between hives  Inspect your hive regularly  All the brood frames (shake off the bees so that you can see the brood properly)  Train yourself and your people who work with you to recognise AFB  Use Apiary quarantines
  • 11. The Management Agency National AFB Pest Management Strategy  If you find AFB in your hive – You MUST REPORT TO THE MANAGEMENT AGENCY WITHIN 7 DAYS  Destroy the hive and the wood ware  Don’t let the hive get robbed out  Don’t extract the honey from the infected colony  Get suspect AFB samples tested  AFB Recognition and Destruction Course  DECA holder – an approved beekeeper
  • 12. AFB – Don’ts  Don’t feed drugs to the bees  Don’t try to treat AFB by removing infected frames  Don’t use the infected wood ware in other hives – you will just spread the disease  Be very careful about buying second hand wood ware off auctions sites
  • 13. Legal Aspect of AFB  Disease Elimination Conformity Agreements (DECA) which provides bee keepers with plans to deal with AFB  Certificates of inspections (done by a DECA person)  Audits are carried out by the Agency to ensure compliance  Free testing of samples for AFB 