Confirmation of further finds of varroa in Canterbury
18 September 2008
MAF Biosecurity New Zealand (MAFBNZ) investigations after last week’s find of varroa bee mite outside of the current South Island Controlled Area have confirmed further reports in North Canterbury.
“Varroa has been confirmed in nine beekeeping operations in the Waimakariri District by MAF Biosecurity New Zealand’s varroa reference laboratory. Thirteen other beekeeping operations in Canterbury have reported suspected varroa in their hives,” said MAFBNZ Incursion Response Manager Richard Norman.
“Tracing and targeted testing is taking place in these operations to find how widespread varroa might be. The lab is looking at samples from south of the Waimakariri River today. Already long-distance connections with Alexandra and Hokitika have been identified, and these are being followed up now.”
Richard Norman said MAFBNZ is reviewing the current movement controls for the South Island.
“MAFBNZ appreciates the assistance of beekeeping industry leaders and beekeepers reporting suspected finds of varroa over the last week.
“We urge beekeepers in Waimakariri, Christchurch and Selwyn Districts to check their hives for varroa and report any suspected finds to MAFBNZ on 0800 80 99 66 free phone number,” said Richard Norman.
Varroa is a notifiable organism and movement controls on hives and beekeeping related equipment remain unchanged at this point.
More information is also available on the MAFBNZ website .
- Judith Hamblyn, Senior Communications Adviser, Biosecurity New Zealand, 04 894 0687 or 029 894 0687