Almond Board news and Yes it is true NO AU bees Allowed till ferther notice.
Hey guys I am fresh back form the California Almond board meeting and those rumors you are hearing about the AU package bees are correct. I called a few I knew were getting them for almonds this year and let them know already as soon as I herd, They found it was either N. cerena virus or one of the other n. virus disease. They also found varoa. They also said Apis cerana was found but still not quite know they dont want to say for sure. But the news is at this point in time all imports of AU package bees are not allowed to be imported. They may how ever allow them under a special circumstances with a quarenteen basis. They are wanting to lean toward that but it is still unknown. This was news from this Am About 11 30 pacific time. They are talking about a AQUIS Quarenteen. What ever that is. They are working to write up new protacal which has needed to be written for a while now. It could take a few weeks. BUt then it still might be an unknown depending on what testing shows.
On the other new front which the above is really important to many of you bringing bees out here for Almonds. Please everyone bear with me I am not the best writer and I took notes and sometimes they went faster with power point then I could write. But this is the New news from Almond Bloom 2009 and beyond.
Water they are more pesamestic about it. It is not looking good do far. So pray for rain or do rain dances ( I threw that last one in)
Right now they are saying that water for Almonds for the Feb 15 date is allocated at 0% there after 15% with west side possible 40% best promise and guess at this time which means that many almond groves will go un touched. Either that or they are going to have to do some creative moving of water around to non priority crops or trees. Almond prices right now are at less then 1.50 a lb. And the input prices is up. Which means there will be no new groves planted and more will go abandoned.
Contracts need to be in place before you make the move out here. They are saying that $150.00 tops is about what growers are fighting to not pay. But 1 35 to 140 may b the better picture. So far CCD usually rears its ugly head this time of year and so far things are not as bad as times past. Well at least for those that are reporting it. They would like more to report it so they can make better guesses on what is needed.
There is also talk about if your contract says 8 frame avg there better be 8 frame avg or be looking for way way lower pay outs. As inspections will be almost manditory at that 150 price. Things have went from 50 a hive to 150 a hive an with water price and the price of fertilizers and the almond prices falling and falling fast growers are not wanting to pay the high prices they just can not afford it. Most might go with the bare min for pollination.
There is also talk in creating a CDC for bees. And that some sort of inspection process be in place and that the bees show they are healthy and strong or they will not go into almonds. As if the prices stay this high this is what the growers are going to want. They want to know they are getting top bees for the top dollar they are forking out.
The Drug maker Bayer is talking about making up an advisory board made up of beekeepers. With the EPA and Bayer involved. They want to help.
There is also new and up in coming bee testing that will be tried out with one large ca beekeeper of unknown name. It is called the bee chip through the Uc San fran.
Bee Chip is specialized for detection of Arthropod Pathogens. DNA from every virus that affects bees and other insects will be on there. They will follow 20 hives from this ca big beekeeper From requeening in March through one years time. 50 bees per hive per week will be taken for testing with this new bee chip. So that they have a starting and baseline in case something happens. Then they can look back and see what might have lead up to the collapse. The bee Chip to identify known pathogens. Followed by DNA sequencing and are any novel paths present for the extent of the info. GPS tracking will be done on all 20 of the hives so that they can follow what went on and where they were for testing to see if one thing lead to a another. If the hive collapses they will have data and samples over the entire year or up until the collapse. They can follow what changed, they will use pesticide tracking as well, As well as what was there in the hive before with the very first sample right after requeening. They can also track the seasonality of the pathogens. They at some point in time maybe not every time but they will take some samples of every stage of the bees life from larvae to pupae to just hatching to worker. But for the most part every week will be just adult workers.
Reports are web accessible with out passwords with live data protocols. Which means because this is state or even privet funded info will be available to you (or who was tested). There will be monthly Executive summery s and links to papers and other useful info on what was found in each weeks samples from that beekeepers page. There will also be feedback and question sections. Right now in March they will be starting the first test. And after that they will be able to follow and open it up to all beekeepers.
Ok guys there is some info I missed as they moved very fast and the power point page would move on me. They promised they would get a copy of the power point graphics mailed or emailed out to me. I wrote as fast as my hands could write. And that is pushing it with the arthritis in my hands as it was cold. I barely made it there in time for the start of the first seminar. And pollination topics, And every thing bee related went on till almost lunch time. I was hoping for a few of you on here to join me there as I would have liked to meet everyone in person. I met a few other beekeepers as well as I talked to Sue Colby and a few of the lab people in Az. And I might be sending them samples from feral and survivor stock that I go and get from swarms and cutouts. There was allot of very very good info. And I wish I could have written faster. Or had a tape recorder as there was allot of info to absorb.
Hope you guys find this helpful. If you have any questions please post them here and I will try to answer them. AS if you ask I might remember more on what was said. My brain works weard that way
Working hard to learn and to help all of you. If I had my laptop with me I would have posted just prior to lunch about the Au Bee packages. Or as soon as I herd which was 9:00am pacific time this year. I would have posted then if I had access to a computer then. But info is here now and now it is up to USA and Au to work things out.
Last edited by Angi_H; 12-11-2008 at 12:24 AM.
Reason: forgot something found my other notes
Angi of HHH Farms Hanford Ca
Organic Farm & heritage, rare breed poultry, ducks, quail