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No further finds of varroa in South Island

Friday 11 June 2004

No further finds of varroa in South Island

There are no signs of varroa infestation in any of the hives checked as part of the South Island varroa investigation initiated on Friday 4 June.

Paul Bolger, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) Varroa Programme Coordinator, said that tracing of possible sites within 10 kilometres of the original detection is well underway.

“To date our surveillance teams have sampled 700 hives with no indication of varroa infestation.

“Field work is progressing rapidly with the addition of local beekeepers to the surveillance teams. MAF has identified approximately 4300 hives in the 10 kilometre zone and expects to complete testing these by end of next week.

“Staff at MAF’s National Pest Plant Reference Laboratory (NPPRL) in Lincoln are processing up to 400 sticky boards daily and additional boards will be sent to a North Island laboratory for examination. Sticky boards are placed in hives for 24 hours to collect varroa mites,” he said.

Tracing of possible varroa infested sites has led to testing of additional apiaries around Christchurch and Murchison.

Movement controls imposed on 4 June remain the same and include the Christchurch City Council area, and the Selwyn, Waimakariri, and Bank’s Peninsula District Council Regions. This area is bounded to the south by the Rakaia River and in the north by the Kowai River – Ashley Forest region.

Beekeepers wanting to move hives or beekeeping equipment within the controlled area need to apply for a movement permit by calling 0800 809 966

For more information on the current South Island varroa investigation please go to: www.maf.govt.nz/varroa

ENDS

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