Training & Courses

The Management Agency is now offering courses on the recognition of AFB through an online learning portal. This will provide great convenience and accessibility to those that are unable to, or find it difficult to, attend our in-classroom courses. Click on the tile below for your preferred course information.
Please note that from 1 April 2024 every paid registration for either the online or classroom courses will be posted a free copy of the “yellow book” – Elimination of American Foulbrood Disease without the Use of Drugs.

American Foulbrood (AFB) is caused by spore-forming bacteria and is the most widespread and destructive of the bee brood diseases.  Learning how to recognise AFB and its symptoms is essential knowledge for every beekeeper to know.



The AFB Recognition and Refresher courses will teach you how to:

  • Recognise AFB symptoms
  • Inspect a hive for AFB
  • Prevent AFB from spreading
  • Implement quarantine procedures & good management practices
  • Effectively destroy any AFB infected hives.

Who needs to complete an AFB Recognition Course?

All beekeepers are encouraged to attend an AFB Recognition course which will help to familiarise them with what is normal and what is not in their working hive. This ensures that the detection and recognition of AFB is caught early and eliminated prior to spreading.

There are no set timeframes for when beekeepers must be registered prior to attending the Recognition Course however, you are unable to apply for a DECA until you have been registered for at least 12 months as well as meeting the other criteria set out in the process sheet. It is not essential for every person attending a course to eventually become a DECA holder.

Who needs to complete an AFB Refresher Course?

DECA holders are encouraged to attend an AFB Recognition Refresher.  This is to ensure you are up to date with the signs of symptoms of AFB within your beehives, which will support beekeepers in their fight against AFB in New Zealand.

What courses do The Management Agency offer?

Online Training
  • AFB Recognition Course (with test)
  • AFB Refresher Course (no test): 
  • AFB Recognition Test Only (no course)
Classroom Based Training

Have further questions?

Please refer to our frequently asked questions.  Email [email protected] with any further queries you may have


If you are planning on attending an AFB Recognition Course it is strongly recommended that you purchase and study a copy of the book titled “Elimination of American Foulbrood Disease without the Use of Drugs” commonly referred to as the yellow book. This worthwhile publication can be obtained from:



AFB Quiz
Take the AFB 5 minute quiz

How well do you know what you need to know about AFB and beekeeping? Take our short quiz and find out.

AFB Videos

Our videos cover everything from your legal obligations to how to recognise AFB, collecting cell and bee samples and more.

AFB Symptoms

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.

AFB Inspection and Diagnosis
Inspection and Diagnosis

Successfully eliminate AFB by telling the difference between symptoms of AFB and other brood diseases in the hive. We tell you the best methods for inspecting your hives.

The Law

New Zealand beekeepers have a number of legal obligations that must be met regarding AFB disease. Read the shortened list in summary, here.

AFB Elimination

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.

AFB Course Info
AFB Recognition Course Info

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.

The AFB App

Follow the link below to open the App. Once open to save to your device you need to bookmark the URL on your phone so you can find it easily again. Please click here to open.