A Guide To Effective Varroa Sampling & Control
The Honey Bee Health Coalition has released a reference guide to help beekeepers sample and control varroa mite levels in their colonies. Now that we are in the month of August, the traditional treatment month for Vermont beekeepers, the relase of this reference guide is very timely.
Click Here to Download: Tools For Varroa Management
The Vermont Agency of Agriculture has received approval from the EPA for the sale and use of HopGuard II in Vermont. HopGuard II offers a relatively benign method of varroa control that can be used throughout the beekeeping season, following the manufacturers recommendations and directions.
HopGuard II is a product produced by BetaTec Hop Products.
The national distributor of HopGuard II is Mann Lake Ltd. Please visit their website to learn more or to place an order.
This video by BetaTec shows how HopGuard II is applied to a hive.
MONTPELIER – A slow change in agricultural practices is having an unintended consequence: limiting food for bees.
Since the 1980s, Vermont has lost more than 100,000 acres of hay fields that used to be full of bee friendly blooming alfalfa and clover. That means bees today aren’t finding as many flowering plants as they need to flourish. And while hay is still grown, it is often cut before it can bloom, making it more nutritious for cows but bad for bees.
VBA is working with the UVM Extension to promote the use of more pollinator plants that would enhance food resources for honeybees and other wild pollinators. As part of this initiative, the VBA would like to promote hay and pasture crops that are more ‘bee friendly’ without sacrificing forage quality that dairy and other livestock farmers are dependent upon. However, there is a need to conduct field trials on farms to actually determine the feasibility of various mixtures and management practices that would help the VBA meet these goals while dairy livestock farmers still meet their feed goals. Read more about the project here:
State Apiculturalist Steve Parise has confirmed that Zombie Fly Apocephalus borealis has been detected here in Vermont. This fly is native to North America. This fly attacks its host by injecting eggs into the abdomen; the emerging fly larva eats the insides of its host. This results in "Zombie" like behavior of the host.
The honey bee sampling was taken from an observant beekeeper in Burlngton. The affected honey bees were sent to San Francisco State University for testing. John Hafernik, a researcher and professor of biology at San Francisco State University has started a website tracking the discovery of infected honey bees in the United Stated. "Zombee Watch"
A Burlington Free Press article was recently published about the Vermont beekeeper and his experience in detecting the Zombie Fly. Killer 'zombie fly' maggots found in Vermont honeybees
For additional information about Apocephalus borealis, please click this link: Apocephalus borealis
VBA Members: You now have the option of checking the status of your membership account, updating your membership information and renewing your membership in the Vermont Beekeepers Association online.
It's easy. Simply login to the site as you normally would and look under the User Menu on the right sidebar of the site's front page. You'll see a few new options:
The first ever Vermont Golden Honey Festival was a great success! Organized by Golden Stage Inn B&B of Proctorsville and Goodmans American Pie of Ludlow, the festival was hosted at Golden Stage Inn on Saturday September 14. Over a dozen vendors showcased their honeybee themed items such as books, pizza, fiber arts, quilts, and of course plenty of honey too.
Organizers estimate that at least 150 visitors passed through. Next year's Second Annual is scheduled for September 13. 2014 and has already been awarded recognition as one of "Vermont's Top Ten Fall Events of 2014."