View Full Version : State inspections

Aug 11th 2009, 06:26 PM
Those of you that do get inspected, does your inspector do the manual labor or do you? Just curious.

Aug 11th 2009, 06:48 PM
Never been "officially" inspected by the state man.

If he wanted to go through my hives he would have to stand and watch, I think I could go slow enough to overheat the inspector and he would leave (he is a little on the fat boy side).


Aug 11th 2009, 08:49 PM
My inspector does all the manipulating. He talks as he's working, educating the beek as he goes along. If you ever get the chance to meet Don Hopkins, head NC inspector, spend some time with him. He is pure gold.

Aug 12th 2009, 06:28 AM
inspection by the state bee inspector can be a quite positive experience. it is amazing what you can learn while you drive about in an old pickup truck (mine). at the current time I have two inspections to qualify for two state permits.

inspection here are typically performed with me removing the lid (and pulling a frame from time to time) and the state inspector collecting a small vial of bees for the lab.

Aug 12th 2009, 08:17 AM
In Ohio if your county is lucky enough to have an inspector they do the work. I have yet to be around (work) when they inspect my hives. I will say it would be nice if I could be there or they could provide a little more info about the inspection.

Aug 12th 2009, 10:10 AM
In Indiana we have one inspector for the entire State: Kathleen Prough. She will inspect your hives upon invitation, although State statute allows her access w/o. She does the work, and it's an educational experience having her go thru your hives. I know some beeks who have recorded her inspections and posted them as youtube videos.

Aug 12th 2009, 04:10 PM
My inspector is a really good "ol boy". He comes once a year. He calls me and says its time. Last year I did the heavy work for him to get to the brood combs after the first two. When I said I'd take a day off and meet him next week, he said he'd call me back this Fri. and we'd schedule, then he ask's "uh, you ain't still got em stacked 10 deep do you" :D .

Aug 12th 2009, 04:33 PM
A State Apiary Inspector comes to my house for a visit to update info and to pin point a couple of yards to inspect and then he goes out to inspect them on his own. The in the fall he returns to look at a couple so he can issue a "Health Certificate" for interstate transport purposes.

I'm curious about what would happen if I said, "No, thank you." If I went to South Carolina, I'm sure there wouldn't be a problem there. But I wonder what would happen when I returned to NY? maybe I'll try that next year.

handyman dave
Aug 12th 2009, 06:41 PM
Mine was a joy! He went completely through the hives, slowly & carefully, teaching the whole time. He is a really good guy and even brought me a gift of some locust boards the next time he came to my area. :D

I genuinely look forward to my inspections next year! :!:

Aug 12th 2009, 07:52 PM
Fl. has a pretty good bee program and I don't mind inspections. I have a bunch of commercials winter around me. Matter of fact, I share one grove with one and I'd sure hate for him to show up and plop some AFB hives down near mine and vice versa.

Aug 13th 2009, 06:05 PM
rast, it may not be your experience, but as a commercial beekeeper, I'm less apt to have AFB then a non-commercial beekeeper.

During the years that I was an Apiary Inspector our boss put out an annual report of the data collected by the inspectors. Each year was similar when it came to presence of AFB in different sizes of apiaries. I wish I could quote the data itself, but I threw all of that stuff out when I was no longer employed. But, basically what i remember is that apiaries of fewer numbers of hives had most of the cases of AFB found in any one season. In other words the smaller beekeepers had the majority of the disease.

Which is not to say that Commercial Beekeepers don't or never have AFB. We do, from time to time. But I get rid of it, by burning it, when I find it. I hope that makes you feel a little better about your neighbor.

Aug 13th 2009, 09:14 PM
I agree. From a numbers standpoint, many who had AFB were smaller operators.

Of course, lets not dismiss the reasoning of this.

Major commercial operations treat spring and fall. I know one rather large operation that has serious AFB in years past. And just as in the past, he sells nucs to anyone who wants them. He is not a large seller, but he does sell them. If you were to ask him, he is AFB free, and has no problems with AFB. But that beginner who buys those nucs with that tainted comb, who then does not keep that treatment schedule going, is more apt to see AFB. So you have ONE commercial guy you will not see AFB, and TWENTY FIVE smaller beekeepers who may have it down the road. Stats not really telling the whole picture is it.... ;)

I noticed Mark you said "we" in suggesting commercial beekeepers sometimes have AFB. But then you said "I" in regards to burning it, all in the same paragraph. And "You" may actually burn it, but from my years of inspecting, I never ONCE had a commercial operation burn a hive due to AFB. Everyone of them treated so it would not be found. And in a state such as New York where there is a mandatory burn policy, hiding problems like AFB, treating out of fear, and other circumstances makes treatments a given. Of course EVERY hive found was burned. That is what they do in New York. But it also a reason so many treat. Not due to any real reason other than fear of having to burn your operation.

That same fear is not seen in a smaller operator, especially one that was sold a tainted colony without realizing it.

Aug 14th 2009, 09:31 AM
You speak the truth Bjornbee. Though I would say that the commercial beekeepers that I know use TM or Tylosin to keep down the vegetative cases of AFB that might crop up if they didn't, not because they fear that the State will make them burn colonies that have AFB.

After all, the State only looks at 10% of my colonies and I assume that that is true of other commercial operations in the state. Therefore, the State isn't going to find anywhere near as many as they might if 20%, 50% or more were inspected. They also only look at, in my case anyway, 50% of the colonies in the yards that they inspected. If AFB had been found the inspector would have inspected all of them in that yard, but no more.

I used the word "we", because I consider myself a commercial beekeeper. A small one perhaps, w/ 400 to 600 colonies, but I make my living at it through honey production, packaging and distributing. Then I used "I" to say what I do, which is not necassarily what other commercial beekeepers do.

So, though we do agree, mostly, my experience is different, though similar. We, you and I, have worked at the same job, though in different states w/ different policies. And one thing that I experienced, while an inspector, was that from year to year, "policy" changed somewhat as to what was to be written up (Quarantined) and what would be allowed to be left to the beekeeper.

As an Inspector, one case of AFB that I remember was a colony that had two cells of AFB in an otherwise healthy and populous hive. I took a sample for lab confirmation, standard operating procedure in NY even though field diagnosis is 99% accurate, and wrote the Quarantine and Abatment Order. When I reinspected the colony a month later, lab confirmation and follow through on the enforcing of the Quarantine and Abatment Order, there was no sign of the disease. And the colony had not been treated in the mean time. Which says something about AFB, to me.

Aug 14th 2009, 03:32 PM
I agree. Much about AFB is related to genetics. Not sure where, but I was just mentioning the other day about the Mraz bee line and his ability to breed for AFB resistance bees.

I have, among many "experiments", a yard for a couple AFB colonies. Isolated and unregistered of course... :o I have a hive that was treated, and it has not seen any AFB for four years now. I think the better hygienic bees we now have are having big impacts on this type side issues.

Aug 14th 2009, 08:25 PM
Did ya notice I said vice versa. When I was growing up that meant the other way around.
I am sure I would feel worse about infecting someone's hives that makes a living from them than they would about mine. I hope that came out right. Typing and talking can come out different. I have absolutely nothing against commercials.

Aug 29th 2009, 07:00 AM
I genuinely look forward to my inspections next year! :!:

That may not happen as funding has been cut and the program not even funded in the upcoming budget.

Now if we can only cut the rest of funding for many other programs in the same manner....... ;)

Aug 29th 2009, 07:59 PM
sqkcrk writes:
In other words the smaller beekeepers had the majority of the disease.

there are a number of factors that might influence what this 'raw data' might actually mean (analysis).

just from a number crunching statistical sense you have suggested that the rate of testing for the two groups is not equivalent. secondly a small number (% infestation) time a large number could result in a total number that greatly exceeds the number of infested hives in hobbist hands.

lastly if you consider how folks deal with these kinds of problems (based on what they know) the hobby folks call the state inspector when they see some problem (which they likely do not fully understand) and the commercial folks deal with the problem directly (one way or the other). the fact that any significant infestation number may make permiting at the various ends of migratory beekeepers yearly movement difficult/untimely might also suggest that commercial folks are encourages to somewhat avoid being notice by the various state inspectors.

from my experience once a commerical operation has a reputation of having diseased (of whatever form) stock this knowledge is fairly quickly known by every state inspector in the country. they do speak, one to the other, to share what they know.

at least here any outfit, migratory or not, that gets at least one complaint in regards to having or selling diseased stock will very quickly finds their options highly limited.

Sep 1st 2009, 11:37 AM
Right you are T. It's alot easier for the state inspectors to inspect all of the hives that a sideliner or hobbyist has, therefore inspection isn't equitable, if that's the right word. I don't know why NY doesn't follow that model and inspect all of the hives in a commercial operation, say, every 5 years or so. And they still could do 10% of the colonies in the other commercial operations every year too. I don't know how they would handle the man power it would take. NY has a hard time finding qualified people who are willing to do the work anyway.

How do you suppose that that would effect the statistic, T? If NYS inspected 100% of a handful of commercial operations and an equal amount of colonies of noncommercials, would that tell a different story.

They'd still have a difficult time checking colonies in every, or almost every county. I think NYS has 10 or 11 inspectors, 2 of which are Senior Apiary Inspectors (ie, supervisors) who don't spend as much time inspecting as the other inspectors. Which is too bad, since they both have more hive and public relations experience and talent.

Sep 1st 2009, 06:21 PM
We have a part-time bee health advisor/inspector here in NS. She called me a couple of years ago and asked if WE could go through some of my hives (only had ten at the time). I would just do a normal inspection and every now and then she would just ask me to hand her a frame (brood). She would look it over and then hand it back to me, no muss no fuss. It actually was an OK experience and I have called her several times since with questions.
I have to admit though that I believe I get better and more up to date information here on these forums.
:mrgreen: :oops: :lol:


Sep 2nd 2009, 06:03 AM
sqkcrk writes:
How do you suppose that that would effect the statistic, T? If NYS inspected 100% of a handful of commercial operations and an equal amount of colonies of noncommercials, would that tell a different story.

I think there would be a lot of commercial folks stranded in some locality with no paper work (health permits) which might allow them to move infected hives over the interstate highway system LEGALLY (you know what I mean here) and in the distance I can see a few smoldering hobbist bee hives here and there.

the real effect (number's wise) would likely be that between the two groups and differentiated between those that treat/don't treat for foulbrood the number should be almost identical. I would suspect the age of the equipment might play into this somewhat.