Honey Bee Health Survey
Laura Pottorff, CDA Division of Plant Industry's Apiary Program Manager, explains
Pottorff: "The more that we do this, the better our data becomes. It gives us a better window into what is going on with managed bees. We are seeing a number Varroa mite —which is a parasitic mite — that is high in both our commercial and hobby apiary. As well as a few other diseases, but it is the Varroa mite that we think is the most important. That is also true nationally as well. So this parasitic mite feeds on the blood or the hemolyph of the bees and it also transmits or spreads virus diseases to the bees too."
Approximately one-third of those apiaries surveyed were hobby apiaries, she continues
Pottorff: "The fact that a lot of hobby beekeepers may not be applying controls for Varroa mites, may be a big reason why colonies are collapsing or struggling."
She adds that CDA is trying to increase the number of hobby beekeepers to participate in this annual survey.