Colour of cell cappings

The first observable symptom of AFB is usually a change in the appearance of cell cappings

Healthy cappings (Fig. 1) are raised in shape, and range in colour from light to dark brown.

Figure 8: Healthy cell capping
Figure 8: Healthy cell capping
Figure 9: Dark sunken cell capping
Figure 9: Dark sunken cell capping

Cappings covering infected cells will initially be the same colour as the uninfected cells surrounding them. However, infected cells will eventually become darker in colour until they appear black. Infected cells also develop a moist, almost greasy appearance and become sunken (Fig. 2).

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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.