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  Tuesday, 17 March 2020
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There are two very disturbing changes to the apiary law effective this year.

§ 3032. Transportation of bees or used equipment into the State

(a) Except as provided under subsections (c) and (d) of this section, bees, used equipment, or colonies shall not be brought into the State of Vermont unless approved by the Secretary by permit. The Secretary shall not approve the import of bees, used equipment, or colonies from out of state unless accompanied by a valid certificate of inspection within the previous 60 days from the state or country of origin stating that the bees, used equipment, or bee colonies are free from bee disease.


Previously a current state inspection and supplier in good standing with their state was all that was needed to import bees. A time period has been implemented of 60 days. What this means is a suppler would be inspected every two months by their state. Vermont does not inspect every two months but is somehow saying other states must and there will be no permission granted to import bees if they don't. I just got off the phone with my supplier asking how often they are inspected. Twice a year, January and then again in Fall. This sounds reasonable. As the state inspectors are up to their armpits in exported nuc inspections early spring to summer. Our state authorities have just put in print that all packages of bees coming into the state be on the same level of potential hazard as nucs and colonies. This is absurd!

Perhaps not a change but certainly something you all should take heed of-

§ 3025. Second inspection of diseased colonies; destruction

The Secretary or his or her inspectors shall inspect all diseased apiaries a second time no less than 10 days after the first inspection. If the existence of disease within the apiary has been confirmed by a federal laboratory, the inspector may destroy any colonies of bees if he or she finds them not cured of such disease, or not treated or handled according to his or her instructions, together with honey combs, hives, or other equipment, without recompense to the owner thereof. This section shall not preclude an inspector from destroying diseased colonies at any time with the consent of the owner or his or her agent. (Added 1983, No. 83, § 1; amended 2003, No. 42, § 2, eff. May 27, 2003.)

Read above carefully. Note there there is no mention of what disease(s) fall into the category of destruction of your hives and colonies. I find that extremely unnerving. A 2017 Vermont study showed 75% hives sampled in that carried deformed wing virus. Lake Sinai Virus came in second place and Chronic Paralysis a strong third. We know bees can carry viruses. It's stressed bees that succumb to them. By the above law as written your colonies can be destroyed if a laboratory test reveals disease. Apparently any kind of disease. Even Nosema.

The first example of a poorly written law is far too exacting. 60 day certificate of health and applies to all package bees even if you get them mail ordered, not to mention preapproval of the Secretary of Agriculture. No quantitative specification, an all encompassing measure that puts a cage of bees on the same platform as a used hive with colony.

The second example if far too vague. We'd all assume the law is regarding American Foul Brood yet nowhere is that written. It's to the discretion of an individual state inspector. That is extremely dangerous.

Full copy for perusing- https://legislature.vermont.gov/statutes/fullchapter/06/172

I hope many of you read the entire law. Legislature is far from perfect and it's our responsibility to ensure they don't keep mucking it up. I see two things needing changes so far. Are there other issues?
2 years ago
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#2669
of course migrating pollinators that have registered apiaries don't have to adhere to the 60 day inspection nor approval from Sec. of Ag. They can come and go freely. Clearly Vermont inspectors are checking their health every 60 days....
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