I truely believe that if at all possible every beekeeper should be able to test for AFB - EFB and Nosema.
If the individual does not have access to a microscope then ask around if a member does tests for bee diseases.
I have been given 3 samples of bees to date that have died out. 2 samples proved positive for Nosema not sure what strain as to distingquish them by light microscopy is difficult. I think I would put my money on Nosema ceranea as the beekeeper did not find any signs of bee spotting in or on the flight board. I have asked for samples of more of his colonies to see if any more have the disease.
I don't know what type the average beek is in England, but here they are mostly a common citizen who decided to buy a hive and set it in the back yard. No research, no training, no desire other than to have them setting there to look at. Many don't even invest in a hive tool, rather use a screwdriver or similar to do the 2 or 3 checks a year they find time to do.
There is no way they are going to spend the money for a microscope, nor learn to use it. It is a major project to just get them to send a 100 bee sample to Beltsville for a free diagnosis.
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