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    2017 CAPA Statement on Colony Losses

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      Summary The Canadian Association of Professional Apiculturists (CAPA) coordinated the annual honey bee wintering loss report for 2016/2017 in Canada. Harmonized questions based on national beekeeping industry profiles were used in the survey as in previous years. The Provincial Apiculturists collected survey data. The respondents operated 413,342 honey bee colonies across Canada. This represents 53.8% of all colonies operated and wintered in Canada in 2016/2017. The national winter loss was 25.1% with provincial values ranging from 13.2% to 41.8%. The overall national colony loss reported in 2017 is in the middle of reported losses since 2006/2007. Despite higher than normal wintering losses during recent years, Canadian beekeepers have been successfully able to replace their annual dead colonies and increase the number of colonies. They increased the number of bee colonies from 589,254 in 2007 to 750,155 in 2016. This represents an increase of the total number of bee colonies by 27.3% during this period in Canada. Respondents reported considerable variation in identifying and ranking the top 4 possible causes of colony losses across the country. The most frequently cited causes in order from high to low were: poor queens, followed by poor winter and spring weather, ineffective Varroa control and weak colonies in the fall. Beekeepers responded to questions on management of three serious parasites and pathogens to beekeeping: Varroa mites, Nosema and American foulbrood. The majority of beekeepers in most provinces reported that they monitored for Varroa mites. Most beekeepers reported that they used Apivar® in spring, formic acid (Mite Away Quick Strip® (MAQS), repeated 40 ml formic acid treatments, or flash treatments) in the summer or fall and oxalic acid in late fall as Varroa treatments. Due to the long season of 2016, many beekeepers used spring and fall applications of Apivar® or Apivar® plus formic acid to keep mites under control. For preventing and treating nosemosis and American foulbrood, many beekeepers across Canada regularly used registered antibiotics but their methods and timing of application varied widely from province to province. Overall, the survey responses indicate that Provincial Apiculturists, Tech-transfer agents and researchers have been successful working with beekeepers across Canada to encourage them to monitor honey bee pests, especially Varroa mites and Nosema, and adopt integrated pest management practices to keep these pests under control. CAPA members continue to work on development and improving management options for beekeepers to keep healthy bees through various working groups within the association and with various stakeholders. CAPA members are also actively involved in the Federal Bee Health Roundtable to develop strategies and work toward addressing the risks and opportunities for developing sustainable industry.

    Organisation : CAPA
    Auteur(s) : Canadian association of professional apiculturists (CAPA)
    Date de publication : 21 août 2017

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