Bumblebee Sector Guide To The National Bee Farm-level Biosecurity Standard
Basic Principles Of Biosecurity

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Putting preventive measures in place to keep livestock (including bees) healthy has been a long-standing and successful practice on Canadian farms. These measures form a biosecurity plan. A biosecurity plan should address how producers manage livestock, equipment, vehicle and human access on the farm; livestock health; and operations.

By following these principles, crop growers who use bumblebees for pollination, as well as the bumblebee suppliers, specialists, and other resource personnel can play a significant role in keeping bees and the industry as healthy as possible:

1.0 Bee Health Management

1.1 Exposure to pests is minimized by introducing bee stocks of known health status. Sources are documented to enable traceability.

1.2 Factors are managed to reduce the bees' susceptibility to pests. A response is implemented when threshold levels are reached.

1.3 Direct and indirect contact with infected or infested bees is minimized.

1.4 Pests and their signs are accurately diagnosed. Bee operations are monitored to assess the risk of pests.

1.5 A standard response plan is in place to address treatment thresholds, options and rotation plans, notification procedures, record keeping, and follow up actions.

1.6 An elevated response plan is in place, and the conditions under which it will be implemented are understood.

2.0 Operations Management

2.1 Only recommended production inputs are utilized and are obtained from known and reliable sources.

2.2 The degradation and contamination of production inputs is prevented by safe and secure storage and disposal.

2.3 Bee equipment is obtained from known and reliable sources. Used equipment is accompanied by proper permits, if required, and is cleaned and disinfected or treated upon arrival, as needed.

2.4 Bee equipment is regularly inspected and, when necessary, action is taken to minimize negative impact to bee health.

2.5 Precautions are taken to minimize the spread of pests through human contact with bees and equipment.

2.6 Facilities are constructed to allow for ease in cleaning, are bee-tight if needed, and are consistent with government standards, if applicable. The facilities have appropriate lighting and climate control for safe storage of bees and production inputs, and enable monitoring and pest management.

2.7 A sanitation and maintenance program is implemented for all premises, buildings, vehicles, and other equipment.

2.8 An integrated management program for weeds and nuisance pests is implemented.

2.9 All those working in a beekeeping operation or utilizing bees are trained and regularly updated on biosecurity risks and protocols.

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