American foulbrood in New Zealand
Objectives of the management plan
The primary objective during the first five-year term of the AFB NPMS was to reduce the incidence of AFB in managed colonies by an average of 10% each year. The objective in the second (five-year) term is to reduce the reported incidence of the disease to below 0.1% by the end of the term.
The plan ahead
The AFB NPMS seeks to eliminate AFB by using the following means:
A set of legal responsibilities on the part of all beekeepers. These responsibilities include:
- registration of all apiaries
- reporting of cases of AFB to the Management Agency (both when found and on an annual basis)
- destruction of all cases of AFB
Disease Elimination Conformity Agreements (DECA). A DECA is a document that provides beekeepers with a means to commit to a personal plan to eliminate AFB from their beehives, and to make changes to the plan if disease levels do not decrease:
- Certificates of Inspection (C of I) to ensure that all beehives belonging to beekeepers without a DECA also receive an adequate level of inspection for AFB
- A course on AFB recognition and destruction, and a competency test, to ensure that all beekeepers carrying out inspections have a demonstrated ability to diagnose AFB
- Audits of DECA and C of I, using both physical inspections and AFB spore tests, to ensure compliance with the provisions of the strategy, and to detect any new outbreaks of the disease
- Counselling of beekeepers with AFB problems
- Ongoing educational programmes in AFB recognition and destruction, using the network of NBA branches throughout New Zealand
- Provision of a free testing service for suspect AFB larvae.
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.