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If you have not had a look at BeeBase for a while I suggest revisiting it as it has been fairly extensively updated.

It was brought to my attention that there was now some interesting data on imported queens. It is quite well hidden but the following link should take you to it: https://secure.fera.defra.gov.uk/beebase/public/BeeDiseases/importReport.cfm

If it doesn't work you will have to log in from the Home page which may also require you to register if you haven't done so yet.

To navigate to the page on queen imports click on the Site Map button in the top right of the Home page, Then scroll down to the Imports and Exports and click on the sub-link which has the same name - Imports and Exports. Then go right to the bottom of the page and click on the link Disease Incidence. If you still with me at this stage in the new window which opens find the link Live third country import report, which you can find in the section call Import reports about two thirds of the way down the page.

The interesting stuff that now appears is not just the number of queens imported from Australia etc but firstly how few are inspected and alarmingly the very high incidence rate amongst these samples tested of nosema, for example 2 out of 2 for Australia and 5 out of 9 for New Zealand.

Four of the New Zealand samples also tested positive for the mite Mellitiphis. This is a pollen mite found in hives. I am not sure if it is a threat but the fact that they are detecting and reporting it suggests it is not something to be overly comfortable about. There is a bit of information on this beast here; http://new.dpi.vic.gov.au/notes/agg/bees--and--wasps/ag1076-diagnosis-exotic-honey-bee-parasites Look for the section on Other mites where it says it is found in hives in Australia - and now New Zealand it would seem.

If you multiply these incidence rates by the actual number of queens imported the figures are alarming. And of course the total number of queens listed are only those declared. How many others are coming through the normal post in Jiffy bags?

There's lots of other interesting stuff on the BeeBase site and I congratulate them for putting all this information in the Public domain. Even if some of it is rather alarming.

If anyone else finds interesting gems on the site please let us know about it.
 
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I forgot to say on the queen imports page there is a year selector in the top right. This accesses records going back several years. If anyone is bored they can do us a graph so we can see any trends!
 

Norton 

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According to Gavin Heather Hills was not importing bees and a big problem appeared with EFB - obviously the local bees have little or no resistance to the disease which only confirms what Brother Adam always said about the AMM type of bees and brood diseases.
Norton.
 

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