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Co-operation key to varroa control


24 July 2008

Co-operation key to varroa control

Federated Farmers Bee chairman John Hartnell says the joint co-operation between individual beekeepers, industry representatives and MAF Biosecurity New Zealand is keeping varroa contained in the South Island.

Mr Hartnell's comments come after the results from the autumn varroa surveillance showed that varroa infestation had not spread outside the control area and the new containment zone.

A new controlled containment line has been formalised and will come into effect 1 August 2008.

"Beekeepers' commitment has enabled the controlled area to be tightened and has potentially slowed the march of varroa south to key food production areas such as the arable small seed sector in Canterbury.

Mr Hartnell acknowledges the goodwill of beekeepers who did not move south with hives while the submission and review process was undertaken.

He said bees infested with varroa can piggy back a ride across the control line and everyone needs to be vigilant. He says complying with movement controls is an important element of the control process.

Beekeepers in the South Island detecting varroa in their hives should report the find to MAFBNZ via the 0800 80 99 66 free phone number.

ENDS

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