On 6th September to the regional inspector e-mailed to inform us that:
… there is an outbreak of American Foul Brood in the Todmorden area (OS 10Km square SD92). The Bee Credible group’s bees are located in the ‘at risk’ area and I will therefore need to inspect them.
Yesterday, Thursday, 15 September, all of our 8 hives were inspected.
The Bee Inspector, Ivor, gave us the
ALL CLEAR; NO American Foul Brood.
Ivor inspected each and every frame in all of the hives starting with a top bar colony that Bee Credible set up in June of this year.
He then moved onto inspect the other hives; 5 nationals (no added foundation) and 2 top bars at 3 more sites in Todmorden.
We can all breath a sigh of relief - for now. There are still hives to be inspected in the 'at risk' area...
We should also be grateful to the beekeeper that reported American Foul Brood - for his diligence. If he hadn't of acted so quickly and responsibly the story in the valley could have been quite different.
All his hives and bees were destroyed – burned. We are sorry for his loss.
We asked Ivor how American Foul Brood could have got in the region. Apparently it could be something as simple as someone throwing away a honey jar (bought off the shelf from an unknown source) with some honey left in it. Foraging bees could find this, eat it, contract the bacteria, and then pass the disease onto the whole colony – and beyond if not caught in time.