Apiary inspectors of america’s 2005 conference
Apiary Inspectors of America’s 2005 Conference
President Phil Craft called the meeting to order with introductions and adjustments to schedule.
AIA President’s 2005 Address
Good morning! Welcome to Reno! I’m very happy to see you all here. While I’ve been
very much looking forward to getting together with you, I have not been looking forward
to this Nevada weather. I’m used to these meetings being held in warm southern winter
locations, like Texas or Florida. And this winter I learned that my understanding of the
geography of the western United States is not that great. When envisioning Nevada
weather, for some reason, desert images came to mind. So you could imagine my surprise
upon consulting my internet weather site last month, to discover that they were
experiencing high temperatures in the mid-twenties here, and lots of snow. With a little
checking I discovered that, actually, Reno is north of my home in central Kentucky and
3500 feet higher in elevation. So while I know I’m going to enjoy myself this week, I’m
not getting the fix of warm weather this year, that I’ve come to expect at our winter
meetings, And I don’t think I’m going to enjoy a dinner sitting in an outside café like I
enjoyed last year with several of you in San Antonio.
I would first like to thank our Vice-President, Harry Fulton, for all of his work in putting
together the program for this year’s meeting. When Don Hopkins asked me if I would
consider taking the vice-president’s job two years ago, he didn’t tell me what I was
getting into. After putting together last year’s meeting I have a real appreciation of
Harry’s efforts in arranging this one. In addition to coming up with a suggested list of
speakers, he had to contact all our speakers, coordinate our schedule with ABF’s
schedule - which is no small feat - arrange for our meeting rooms, arrange with our
treasurer for the meeting registration process, send out numerous emails to all of us, and
many other tasks that I’m not going to enumerate. So I very much appreciate the job that
I would also like to express my appreciation to Troy Fore, ABF Executive Director, for
his assistance and cooperation in coordinating this meeting.
In 2000 I attended my first AIA meeting in Gainesville, Florida. I had assumed my duties
as the Kentucky State Apiarist the previous June. At that time my employment, which re-
established the apiary program in Kentucky, was bucking a trend, a trend that has since
developed into a real pattern - a continuing pattern of state budget cuts, that are
accompanied by cuts in state apiary programs. That January in Gainesville, as AIA
President Blaine White welcomed me to AIA, Blaine also made note of the dropping of
the apiary program in the state of Washington. Since 2000, we have seen the loss of
apiary programs or positions in Iowa, and Tennessee. We’ve also seen the loss of
numerous apiary inspector positions in other states. These budget problems have been
evident in the decrease in attendance s at these meetings. Blaine did not give his address
in 2000 in person; his address was read by the AIA Vice-President, because Blaine was
unable to travel to Gainesville due to lack of funding in his budget. Last year in San
Antonio, I read AIA President Bob Reiner’s address, because he was unable to attend,
Bob is not with us again this year, along with a number of others. I am very appreciative
that there are this many of us present.
However, while state apiary programs have experienced this loss reduction in positions and resources, the challenges facing the American beekeeping industry and the demands this places on all of us continue to increase. We all know what those challenges are; we’ll be discussing them in the following days, which is why we are here. However, even with the burdens that budget cuts and problems in the industry put upon each of us, there are positives. It looks like we will soon have an alternative antibiotic to Terramycin for the control of American Foulbrood. The possibility of a legal use of formic acid may become a reality. The success in research of varroa resistance in honeybees gives us hope that continued development of new and better chemical varroa control agents may not be as critical to the industry as we once thought. Many of us see a renewed interest in beekeeping and an increase in the numbers of hobby and side line beekeepers, this increase in numbers of beekeepers results in new support for us, at least morally if not economically. And last but not least, as many of us struggle to find the resources to get to these meetings, we continue to do so. We do it not only because of the opportunities to hear presentations from university and USDA researchers, and others in the beekeeping community, which is a great opportunity. And not only due to the opportunities that these meetings give us to discuss with each other the problems and issues that we face, and to try to speak out with a united voice about these issues. But also we gather together because we are still able to continue to learn from each other, and give each other support - not only because we face the same problems, but because of the relationships we have built with each other over the years. When I attended that AIA meeting in 2000, I did not realize that it would be the people and not the content of the meetings themselves that would prove to be of greater value to me in the coming years. I very much look forward to spending the next few days with each of you, and hopefully for many more years to come.
The following items were completed since the January 2004, AIA meeting in San Antonio, Texas.
Sent out thank you letters to the appropriate people involved in the Ontario conference.
Continued correspondence regarding a USDA survey program.
Conducted correspondence and miscellaneous duties.
Sent a state report questionnaire to all states and provinces.
Nearly published the proceedings of the 2004 AIA Annual Conference held in Texas.
Respectfully submitted on January 10, 2005
J. Brothers (DE) reported that the committee approved of the Treasurer’s report P. Denke moved, H. Fulton 2nd, Passed
Report by A. Phibbs (WI), as Chair nominated the following slate:
Directors: 2005-2006 At large – Patricia Denke
E. Levi moved and D. Hopkins 2nd, Passed by acclamation
D. Hopkins (NC) reported as Chair of committee
Baton Rouge for 2006; Paul Poling 2nd; Passed .
Paul Jackson (TX) reported as Chair of Committee
Patti Elzen shall receive the Research Award (posthumously)
D. van Engelsdorp (PA), D. Hopkins (NC), J. Fisher (MD), E. Levi (AR)
Resolution #1 National Survey of Honeybee Diseases and Pests
Expanding world trade increases the risk of introducing new pests and diseases of honeybees. Past introduction of such pests, such as Varroa mites and Small Hive beetle, underline the seriousness of such threats. Presently, numbers of managed colonies across the country are decreasing rapidly. This is happening while demand for pollination units in many states (i.e. almond pollination in California, East Coast blueberries, and mid-west cucurbits) is increasing at an unprecedented rate. This demand will increase cross-continent traffic of bees. Coupled with importation of bees the risk and rate of spread of newly introduced bee pests will increase dramatically. In the past, United States borders restricted bee and queen imports, and thus USDA-APHIS obligation to coordinate national surveys was not critical. United States’ commitments under WTO and NAFTA treaties change this situation as they allow signatory nations to export bees and queens into the US when they demonstrate their disease and pest situation is no different than those that exist within the United States. In order to meet requirements set out by international trade agreements, nations wishing to export bees or queens to the United States must have in place a national annual disease survey. Similarly, if US bee and queen producers hope to export to other nations a national annual survey must be in place in the United States. In short, trade treaties that have opened US borders to foreign bee supplies were passed without provision for a national disease survey, thus placing the US at a disadvantage when compared to nations who have invested in these national surveys. It is incumbent upon USDA-APHIS to fulfill its obligation under the Honey Bee Act and Plant Protection Act. This obligation requires USDA-APHIS to centralize and collect data on the current status and risks of honey bee diseases and pests, including honey bee viruses, so that informed decisions may be made regarding interstate travel regulations and importation of bees and queens. The apiary industry and the pollination dependent producers are placed in serious risk by USDA-APHIS inaction. Therefore, the Apiary Inspectors of America (AIA) resolves that USDA-APHIS establish a nationwide honey bee disease and pest survey to meet the requirements necessitated by rules recently enacted to meet treaty obligations. Without this survey the apiary industry is not
accorded the same protection and opportunity as the apiary industries of other signatory nations. This jeopardizes the US food supply. It is further resolved that the USDA-APHIS establishes a committee to explore how best to utilize existing state apiary inspection programs to conduct the necessary nationwide survey. From a regulatory perspective, the infrastructure already exists within most states to implement such a national survey. Cooperative Ag Pests survey (CAPS) offers a model to get this program underway. The AIA stands willing to take an active role in this regard. Audience: USDA, NASDA #1 Committee moved and 2nd by H. Fulton Passed
Petitioning Support for National Bee Disease and Pest Survey
In light of the serious threat to the apicultural industry posed by importing exotic honey bee diseases and pests, the AIA encourages state and national beekeeping organizations, as well as other producer groups reliant on honey bees for pollination to vocalize their support for a nationwide bee disease and pest survey conducted under the auspices of USDA-APHIS. Further, the AIA requests that stakeholder group memberships contact their representatives in Congress to appropriate the funding necessary to conduct this national survey. Audience: stakeholder groups #2 Committee moved and 2nd by H. Fulton Passed
Alternative Medications For Treatment Of American Foulbrood Disease
The only currently labeled product for the treatment of American foulbrood disease
(AFB, Paenibacillus larvae
) is oxytetracycline (Terramycin®). Tolerance to oxytetracycline by the AFB bacterium has been documented in the United States creating a need for alternative products for the management of AFB. The use of alternative methods and products for AFB control would impede the further development of resistant strains of AFB.
Be it resolved that the Apiary Inspectors of America urge the USDA-ARS to develop and
facilitate alternative methods and treatments for AFB. Audience: USDA, ARS #3 Committee moved and 2nd by A. Phibbs Passed
EPA Registration of Chemicals for the Beekeeping Industry
In light of documented resistance of the Varroa mite to fluvalinate and/or coumaphos in many states, the beekeeping industry is in desperate need for alternative control for Varroa mites. Be it resolved that the Apiary Inspectors of America appreciates the expeditious manner in which the EPA has addressed the beekeeping industry’s need for Section 18 approval of Checkmite+® and ApiLife Var®. The AIA also looks forward to the continued timely review of alternative compounds currently under consideration for Section 3 approval. In order to reduce risks of resistance development and residue accumulation we encourage the EPA and State pesticide officials to allow Section 18 approval of multiple alternative products. Audience: EPA, State Pesticide Officials #4 Committee moved and 2nd by H. Fulton passed with one abstention
H. Fulton suggested that we pay for L. Cutt’s expenses to come to the meeting.
D. Hopkins 2nd; Passed.
Need a CAPA meeting representative Feb 2nd
President will find a person.
List serve situation since Blane’s departure;
North Carolina will check to see if they can house/manage the list.
Web Server is needed. Where is going to reside? Keith Tignor said he’d manage that site
Need to put Africanized Honeybee Action Plans on web.
E. Levi (AR) moved for adjournment; J. Fischer (MD) 2nd.
NOTES FROM PRESENTATIONS AND DISCUSSIONS
, The Two Big “R”s of Beekeeping: Resistance and Residue
Lawrence Cutts, Florida, Chief Apiary Inspector, retired
AFB to OTC, Varroa resistance to Apistan, CheckMite, Amitraz, Formic Acid?
Enhancing screen bottoms with smoke, Sucrocide
Research in Apiguard- thymol
Thymivar – Thymol
Apitol (not being manufactured)
Amitraz (not being made)
Vinegar (not working well)
Oxalic acid (might be good)
FGM (mixed results)
Drone brood removal (causes worker brood selection?)
Bayer has two new products
Sunshine (lessens mites)
Sulfa causes residues
TM has a half life of 7 days
Tylosen half life 120 to 186
Lincomycin stable in honey for about 300 days
Mavrick residues are 100 times as much as Apistan
This means you get resistance 100 times faster.
Zylene makes queens sterile and doesn’t have to be on the label Fluvalinate makes drones sterile
CheckMite Two week withdrawal before honey supers Two week withdrawal before queen cups Stable in honey for nine months! Fumigants Phostoxin, sulfa, cyanide (eats nails) Wood preservatives Many leave residues Honey Robbing Chemicals (we don’t know enough) Carbolic acid Bee-go Bee Quick Horace Bell destroyed $3,000,000 of combs and frames due to his belief of residues He says his bees are better than they’ve been for many years. AFB Resistance Management Anyone’s misuse is a threat to every beekeeper in the country Solutions:
Varroa Resistance Management Use the right products right Rotate products Use resistant stock Screen Bottoms (with powdered sugar or smokes) Post-treatment checks Residue Management Use proper product Follow labels Rotate Brood combs
Beekeepers are gaining the reputation of Departments of Agriculture as being the worse offenders of pesticide misuse.
How are Queen Breeders and Producers Assuring the Industry of AHB Free Honey
– Presentations and Discussion
Paul Jackson, Texas Apiary Inspection Service
As of Nov. 24 of 2004, Texas dropped quarantined language –inspections must be
requested, no trap lines – certification is on a volunteer basis! Some beekeepers will want
certification for sales of queens/bees, pollination contract, law-suit risk management. Use
FABIS and follow up with full morphemetrics. The general public is calling for
certifications to know their risks and especially when there’s been a stinging incident.
Danny Weaver, B.Weaver Apiaries
Texas stands as a model to the rest of the country in dealing with this public nuisance
pest. Education of the public is paramount.
Weavers increased the vigilance of monitoring of behavior and have always asked for
certification. Re-queening is not difficult and is effective. Mitochondrial DNA only
checks maternal lines. Nuclear DNA methods are going to be the long term certification
Concentration of mating nucs. Ensure drone flooding of European stock. They don’t
have many feral colonies in the area due to their flooding of the area with their stock.
Testing of queen and drone mothers is the best they can do.
Beekeepers should be part of the solutions and not part of the problem. Keep colonies
concentrated in an area and therefore minimize the foraging for others. Also, flooding
the skies with European drones.
Molecular markers have to show a relationship to defensive behavior.
Migratory beekeepers aren’t always careful about defensive behavior and can’t
necessarily do anything about the situation due to the drones that have been produced.
We need a survey of feral colonies. Pushes DNA markers for behavior.
Tom Rinderer, ARS/USDA, Baton Rouge
Certify that you’re not shipping Africanized bees by not operating in an Africanized area.
One bee breeder in Southern California has shifted from production queens to selling
breeders that are AI. Is he for sure controlling his drones? Or is he just getting drones
where he’s checked the queens?
Then there are the boarder line breeders (those in boarder line areas). People who are
working on the margin areas can do fine if they are drone flooding, etc.
It’s probably fairly stable right now.
Are they still moving? Not so much. The intensity of Africanization (strength of
genetics) seems to not be gaining.
Genetic dilution is happening in southern Texas where there’s an abundance of kept bees.
They seem to stop at about 55 inches of rain. (In Africa they que up during the monsoon
and make haste afterwards on the flowers that follow.) In East Texas and LA, what
follows the rains is the winter. The bees dwindle and often starve. OK is an example of
them reaching out under optimum conditions and less favorable conditions will push
Their resistance to Varroa is marginal. With other pest are very marginal at best. The
upsides of AHB cannot out weight the downside.
What makes an AHB? Does a single dna test make an unwanted trait?
A full-blown morphemetric test is the best method. Yes, there are lines to be drawn
What’s the risk of queens?
The beekeeper will know in 6-7 weeks but what about the drones that have been
produced? Current Distribution of AHB in the US and Recent Findings on AHB
Five Africanized colonies have been found in Alabama .
Florida uses 500 traps. Got 300+ swarms. 59 + on mit DNA from 95 on positive FABIS
They’re putting together an Action Team.
USDA isn’t helping due to their concerns with Homeland Security.
Maryland is experiencing less support also due to Homeland Security.
Mississippi is trapping in ports. They’ve had one positive in a port.
LA has done a good job. There was a carry-in from s. Texas. Swarms have been found
One swarm was found in British Colombia three years ago.
One colony was found in KY a few years ago.
Arkansas has a Task force and runs traps. None found to date.
Oklahoma has 11 positive counties and two more on the way. Re-entering the inspection
South Carolina had a swarm in the stabilizer of a plane.
West Virginia has had a find in a box car.
North Dakota only worries about it if they come in through natural migration or if there’s
a stinging incident.
Media and public perception is an AHB situation.
Federal Bee Regulations -
Wayne Wehling , APHIS/USDA
There’s lots of “hot” issues without answers.
There’s been some changes from old regulations to what happened on Nov. 22
Risk Assessment for NZ and Australia
Risk Assessment is in process for Argentina
These assessments deals with all aspects of bees.
Open comment period is closed and 308 were received with most being “against”.
• nothing can go into Hawaii from Australia Canada and NZ
• Germ Plasma can come in from the same as before
• Needs a good export certificate from exporter nation
o Has to state that the bees originate from that country o Has to detail diseases found from inspections.
These agreements override states’ laws (ie; if USDA approves bees from X with AFB,
they can enter into a state that doesn’t allow AFB from another state …too bad.)
APHIS will notify the state authorities that the bees ARE coming.
For Export, “state inspectors are not qualified”. APHIS will come to certify inspectors to
do APHIS inspections.
There needs to be a national survey program.
To make this happen there will need to be both an industry and an legislative push. Advances in Breeding Mite Resistant Honey Bees
-Tom Rinderer, ARS/USDA, Baton
Research of 2004:
They specialize in breeding & evaluating to produce honeybee stocks with useful traits Russian program Explained culling process Last year was the last year to bring in new material. They don’t like to just judge on mite presence.
Mite populations can be relative to the productivity of the colony.
Honey production coupled with mite control. Russian bees don’t build up until there’s a consistent pollen flow.
Russian bees tend to reduce brood nest during dearth Mite populations also drop without brood due to Russian mite biting Pure Russian queens are not easy to find. And there’s a market. Charlie Harper is the main breeder/beekeeper ($300) By and large, Russian bees are mostly resistant to Tracheal mites also and therefore, they winter well! They’re looking at:
o Longevity of colonies without treating. o The effect of dividing colonies on Varroa growth o Russian queen management
o Production of supersedure cells and tearing them down
Re-queening complaints have not been confirmed.
o Development & use of Mite resistance traits
o SMR - the eating back of infested brood o Length of Phoresy period - the length of time the mites spend on the adult
bees. The longer the better because they aren’t reproducing.
Russian bees are more tolerant to Small Hive Beetle infestations
Partially because they remain stronger due to their Varroa resistance.
Tracheal mites can kill bee colonies in the south even in the summer months as they reduce longevity of workers How do bees resist tracheal mites?
Grooming with mid leg during questing period
They are now evaluating Russian bees for crop pollination. Biology & Management of SHB
- Mike Hood, Clemson University & Jerry Hayes,
Florida Inspection Service
Finding them: Ouze coming out of hive. Winter time inspection
There’s only adult beetles and they’ll be in the center of the cluster
55+F beetles will be moving: Lay cover on the ground and bounce supers for beetle drop Varroa mite sticky screen bottom Take top off Attractants will help! Beetles will look for weak colonies. Keeping strong colonies is a defense. Alarm Pheromones are attractants.
West Beetle trap works well. Precautions Necessary for Inspecting Hives under Treatment with Formic Acid,
Api-Life Var and other Mite Control Agents -
David VanderDussen, NOD Apiaries
MiteAway II- Sect. 3. --Feb. 28 at the latest
Not the formic gel.
Not Mite-be-Gone (bee yard pad charging)
NOD’s product is a pre-charged pad which sits on top of frames in a spacer.
It’s 80-90% effective and works best in temperatures between 50 – 80 F.
Screen bottom board reduces the efficacy
What to do as an inspector when you find MiteAway pad in a hive? Should use gloves,
eye protection and respirators. Aplife Var – Thymol,
Steve Forest, Brushy Mountain
Consists of pharmaceutical product made in France
It’s not essential oils.
Works effectively to control Varroa. Other Regulatory Issues & Discussions
K.Prough, IN –
How do you regulate for SHB in packages? It was agreed that you can’t really stop people from importing queens or packages but they need to be aware of the risks.
The purpose of regulations is to slow the spread of problems.
E. Levi – described the movement across the river
H. Fulton – They’ll find their natural boundaries
Compliance agreements that includes list of customers for importation of queens and packages.
Weaver’s don’t want to comply with that.
AR, FL, & MD will provide their action plans and provide a model plan by June 1
Put together of some regulatory scenarios? Setting up ad hoc committee to put these
together. Wayne will take it to an Attorney for interpretation. We can’t stop the
importation of problems because we can’t say we don’t have specific problems because
we don’t have a national survey. We can’t burn hives with AFB if they’ve been
imported! That’d be “impeding commerce”. Code of Federal Register, vol. G9 #203 –
Nov. 21, 2004
Office Internationale des Epizooties Medhat Nsar - Queen Imports in Canada
SHB was imported to Winipeg w/wax cappings from Texas two years ago.
Started finding them around a wax processing plants.
Got Coumaphos resistant varroa in Ontario from Pennsylvania. Also got the same in New Brunswick from Florida. Neither PI nor NS have tracheal mites. 600,000 hives (Alberta has 40%) Canola is big in Calgary area at $120 Blueberry is about $80 There are provincial and federal inspection programs
There are bee and honey inspection services
CAPA is organized with committees to communicate issues to the Federal Minister of
Agriculture Discussion on Importation-
Wayne Welding, Sarah Karman, & Dr. Castilla
Resistant strains are considered another “pest”
10-day notice before arrival.
Shipments must be accompanied with a certificate of health that must meet the standards
if not or it doesn’t - shipment will be returned at shippers expenses or destroyed
Problems with states that don’t have a program for inspection.
1. Qualifying potential exporters to meet requirements 2. Having a national survey to demonstrate what’s here for the defense of imports.
This is too big for a CAPS program. We’re talking about a lot of money and that’s going to take an act of congress. Thomas Kruchten, Agri Statistician, USDA National Agricultural Statistics Services brought up the potential of them being part of the solution. Sara is going to contact all states to find out what each state is doing.
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