Elimination of AFB
IMPORTANT: You have a legal obligation under the Biosecurity Act 1993 to register as a beekeeper. Part of the registration process involves registering your apiaries.
The goal of the American Foulbrood National Pest Management Plan (AFNPMP) is to eliminate American foulbrood in managed colonies (i.e. beehives) in New Zealand. The beekeeping industry is breaking new ground in setting this goal. Elimination of AFB has not been achieved on a national scale before, although there are examples of other animal diseases being eradicated from a country e.g. the eradication of hydatids from New Zealand.
Elimination of AFB is seen as possible in New Zealand both because the country has a relatively small population of honey bee colonies (estimated to be 885,000 including feral colonies), and because importations of additional colonies and other materials capable of carrying AFB are controlled.
Some New Zealand beekeepers have also shown that elimination on a national level is possible. By destroying colonies with AFB instead of using antibiotics, and using management techniques to avoid the spread of the disease to other hives, they have effectively eliminated the disease from their own businesses.
Pupal Tongue roping out
AFB infected larva will rope out 10-30mm before “snapping back”
How well do you know what you need to know about AFB and beekeeping? Take our short quiz and find out.
Our videos cover everything from your legal obligations to how to recognise AFB, collecting cell and bee samples and more.
There’s a lot of good information here, telling you everything you need to know about recognising AFB: the visual symptoms, smell of AFB and more.
New Zealand beekeepers have a number of legal obligations that must be met regarding AFB disease. Read the shortened list in summary, here.
Most hives become infected because bees, honey or equipment have been put into a hive from another hive that is infected with AFB. Lower your chances of an AFB infection by reading this section.
Find out when the next AFB Recognition and Competency Courses, or Refresher Courses are available. These are held throughout the year in various New Zealand locations across the South Island and North Island.