Bumblebee Sector Guide To The National Bee Farm-level Biosecurity Standard
Section 2: Operations Management

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2.1 Obtaining Production Inputs

Target Outcomes

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

Description

Production inputs may be purchased by a grower or they may be acquired at no cost and include consumable products used for bumblebee keeping such as feed supplements and any treatment products.

This section does not include bees (which are addressed in section 1.1) and hive boxes (sections 2.3 and 2.4).

Approved: Production inputs for which importation, purchase, and/or use is regulated by the government. Examples include pharmaceuticals and other treatment products, as well as supplemental feed.

Safe sources: The acquisition of production inputs from sources that are known to be reliable in terms of providing products that are free from disease contamination, not expired (if applicable for some treatment products), and accurately labelled. Supplier lists for safe sources of production inputs may be identified by local beekeeping associations or PAs.

Documented: The grower obtains documentation (if applicable) and maintains records of the product, date acquired, quantity acquired, supplier name, and contact information to enable traceback if a problem should occur that is related to the use of that input.

Recommended Practices

1. Domestic Sources for Production Inputs

  1. Where available, purchase from certified/inspected suppliers, or through recognized bee supply companies and cooperatives, as identified annually by the PA or other authority.
  2. Purchase production inputs from suppliers that you know and trust and those with established disease and pest control programs.
  3. Investigate unfamiliar suppliers before purchasing.
  4. Confirm the supplier has a permit or licence to sell applicable production inputs.

2. Supplemental Carbohydrate Feed

  1. If it becomes necessary to add supplemental carbohydrate feed, granulated white sugar or high fructose corn syrup dissolved in water is the recommended nectar supplement for bumblebees.
  2. Feeding honey or other bee products back to bees presents a risk of disease transmission.
  3. Feeders and containers are new.

3. Treatment Products

  1. Only obtain treatment products approved for use with bumblebees or hive equipment, as stated on the product label, or as prescribed by a veterinarian. Ensure products are not expired. Obtain treatment products from reliable sources if the product requires special storage conditions (e.g. temperature, light, humidity).

Record Keeping

If production inputs are procured, they should be clearly identified on receipt by lot number(s), and the following information is recorded for each lot:

  • name of product
  • quantity of product
  • date received
  • expiration date, if applicable
  • name, address, and telephone number of supplier
  • hive placement identifier (i.e. where the product was used)

Maintain records for a sufficient period of time to enable effective and efficient traceback.

2.2 Handling And Disposal Of Production Inputs

Target Outcomes

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

Description

Production inputs include consumable products such as feed (carbohydrate and protein supplements and substitutes) and pest treatment products.

Recommended Practices

Personal sanitation practices are followed (section 2.5) after handling confirmed or suspected production inputs that have been contaminated with disease spores, pests, or parasites.

1. Handling and Disposal of Feed

  1. Generally, use only sugar water or high-fructose corn syrup as supplementary feed.
  2. Use appropriate feeders for supplementary carbohydrates. Feeders should be of a smooth material (such as plastic or galvanized metal), and it is recommended that they be new and not refilled.
  3. If a food source is found to have been accessed by infected or infested bees, or if the health status of bees accessing the food or water source is unknown, the feed should be removed (if feasible), sealed, and disposed of safely (e.g. by pouring down the drain, sending to landfill in a sealed container or burning).

2. Handling and Disposal of Treatment Products

  1. Store pharmaceuticals and chemical treatments according to label instructions (temperature, humidity, and light controlled), if applicable.
  2. Use a first in/first out inventory management system for supplies; that is, use older inventory before newly acquired inventory, providing the older inventory has been properly stored and is not past the expiry date.
  3. Dispose of expired products or excess products that will not be used according to the label instructions, or return to the veterinarian or supplier for proper disposal. Mark hives with the amount and date of pesticide applied.
  4. If using pesticide strips (as in controlling Varroa mites in honey bees, which do not appear to cause any harm to bumblebees at present), label the box with the date that the strips should be removed. In those cases, avoid reusing pesticide strips, as the lower dose delivered will be less effective and may cause resistance to develop.

Record Keeping

Keep records on the following:

  • feeding dates;
  • feed type, quantity, and feed supplier; and
  • treatments applied and dates for application and removal, if applicable.

Maintain records for a sufficient period of time to enable effective and efficient traceback.

2.3 Obtaining Bee Equipment

Target Outcomes

Bee equipment is obtained new 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.

Description

This document is based on the assumption that the grower is using a commercially available hive box purchased from one of three commercial suppliers. Using used boxes is not common and is not recommended.

Commercial bumblebee colonies are generally housed within two plastic containers inside corrugated cardboard boxes for ease of storage, shipment, and functionality. One container is a hive and the other is feed (generally sugar water) to maintain the bumblebees, due to the lack of sufficient nutrients during their foraging and pollination activities. These boxes are used for several weeks (6 to 8) for the pollination of crops, most often inside greenhouses and occasionally outdoors in berry production, and are usually destroyed or disposed of after use.

Bee equipment includes hive equipment (e.g. hive boxes, feeders, mouse guards, entrance reducers, hive stands). Hive equipment excludes production inputs (section 2.1–2.2) and tools. Tools are considered an extension of the growers' person and are addressed in section 2.5. Most bumblebee hive boxes comprise the entire set of bee equipment. Most are purchased as a complete new package, along with the bees that populate them.

Documented: The grower obtains documentation (if applicable) and maintains records of the equipment, date acquired, quantity acquired, supplier name, and contact information to enable traceback if a problem that relates to the use of that equipment were to occur.

Recommended Practices

  1. Purchase new hive boxes when acquiring a new bumblebee colony, as the best defence against introducing pests is to avoid acquiring used equipment altogether.
  2. These boxes are used for several weeks for the pollination of crops, most often inside greenhouses, and are not usually returned to the supplier. It is recommended that they be carefully disposed of, as outlined in section 2.4.
  3. The importation into Canada of used beehives or bee equipment is prohibited under the Health of Animals Regulations, paragraph 57(a).

Record Keeping

Keep records of sources and acquisition dates of hives and equipment. Such records may help the grower with guarantee claims, as well as the selection of suppliers or materials in future, based on their satisfaction with the performance of the equipment. The following information should be recorded:

  • date of receipt;
  • name, address, and telephone number of supplier,
  • exact location of hive placement;
  • health status or other documentation provided by supplier; and
  • treatments administered upon receipt of the equipment.

Maintain records for a sufficient period of time to enable effective and efficient traceback.

2.4 Handling And Disposal Of Bee Equipment

Target Outcomes

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

Description

The proper disposal of the bumblebee hive (including both the hive box and any remaining live or dead bees) presents an opportunity at a critical control point for ensuring that no further indirect contact can occur with any diseases or parasites on any of the hive materials.

Disposing an entire hive is the most common practice for bumblebee management in greenhouse settings. Often, a grower may choose to destroy a hive quickly, given the relatively low cost of this intervention, rather than attempting other interventions, including treatment.

Disposing the entire hive at the end of the pollination period is also a critical and recommended practice and serves as a critical control point. In Western Canada where Bombus impatiens is not native, the standard practice is to dispose of all hives no later than eight weeks after initial placement.

Because disposing of an entire hive presents such an opportunity for quick and effective interruption of the spread of parasites and diseases, take care to dispose of the boxes and bees effectively.

Recommended Practices

Recommended practices for hive disposal include the following options (supplier):

  1. Have the entire hive picked up by a bumblebee pollination service provider and disposed of appropriately according to the supplier's biosecurity protocols.
  2. Freeze the entire hive materials and contents, with subsequent disposal in a garbage bag at a local landfill.
  3. Place hives in a closed container or air-tight plastic bag, and apply carbon dioxide gas, with subsequent disposal in a garbage bag at a local landfill.
  4. Drown all bees inside the hive by completely immersing the hive in water, with subsequent disposal in a garbage bag at a local landfill.
  5. Bury the entire hive materials and contents at an appropriate depth, protecting from potential scavengers.
  6. Burn the entire hive materials and contents.

Record Keeping

Retain records of hive box disposal for a sufficient period of time to allow for effective and efficient traceback as follows:

  • date and location of disposal;
  • reason for disposal, including details of symptoms noted if disposal is for pest control;
  • notes about any bees known to be alive, but not disposed of; and
  • method used for destroying the hive box and its contents (including the amount of time exposed to freezing, carbon monoxide, or drowning).
  • exact location of ultimate disposal at landfill by burial or by burning.

2.5 Personal Sanitation

Target Outcomes

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

Description

Grower personal contact with bees may be directly via bare hands, or by contact with personal protection equipment such as coveralls, gloves, and head gear. They may also make indirect contact through tools used on or near bumblebee hive boxes.

Surfaces such as hive tools, truck door handles, steering wheels, beverage containers, and cell phones may be easily contaminated by soiled hands or gloves.

Recommended Practices

1. Hand Washing

  1. Immediately wash hands, or change gloves after handling hive equipment or bees to avoid spreading pests to these other surfaces.
  2. Carry water, soap, a mild bleach solution, and paper towels for washing hands, or use hand sanitizer.
  3. Always wash hands after handling diseased or infested equipment or bee products. Place cloth towels or paper towel used for hand drying in a sealable bag for later disinfection or disposal.
  4. Always wash hands when moving to another operation, even if infection or infestation is not confirmed.

2. Gloves and Clothing

  1. Wear disposable gloves. Carry a supply of several pairs.
  2. If reusable gloves are worn, carry extra pairs of clean gloves.
  3. Wash and disinfect soiled reusable gloves before reuse. Canvas gloves can be washed in a bleach solution. Rubber gloves can be scrubbed down with hand cleaner and a scouring pad or powder while still being worn.
  4. Always change gloves after handling infected or infested equipment or bee products, even if infection or infestation is not confirmed. Insert the contaminated gloves in a sealable bag for disposal or later disinfection.
  5. Carry soap, water, and a mild bleach solution or hand sanitizer, and wash hands before putting on the clean gloves.
  6. Prevent stray bees from hitchhiking on clothing.
  7. Wash coveralls regularly in a bleach solution and/or allow to dry in the sunshine. UV rays from the sun can be effective in killing disease spores.

3. Tool Disinfection (if applicable)

  1. Carry extra sets of clean and disinfected tools.
  2. Always disinfect tools after handling diseased or infested equipment or bee products. Insert the contaminated tools in a sealable bag or wrap in aluminum foil for later disinfection if there is no method of disinfection readily available on-site.
  3. Always disinfect or change tools when moving to another operation, even if infection or infestation is not confirmed.
  4. Sterilize the tools by using one of the following methods:
    1. Use soapy water and bleach, or an approved disinfectant.
    2. Scorch with a propane torch.
    3. Irradiate.
    4. Sterilize in an autoclave.

Record Keeping

Record keeping for personal sanitation practices is not necessary.

2.6 Facility Design

Target Outcomes

Facilities are constructed to allow for ease in cleaning, are bee-tight if needed, and 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.

Description

The suppliers of bumblebees must ensure that the bumblebees they are rearing are kept isolated from any other bee populations, both managed and native. To do this, and to achieve government certification for their facilities, strict building design requirements should be adhered to.

Growers should seek to design their buildings to minimize the possibility of bumblebees escaping from the facility.

Recommended Practices

  1. Suppliers of bumblebees should adhere to the following practices:
    1. Keep all walls, floors, and ceilings smooth and sealed at seams of panels, inside corners, and at joints with floor and ceiling.
    2. Paint walls and ceilings white, or any other light colour, for easy detection of stray insects.
    3. Cover roof vents, air intake, and drains with sufficient mesh to prevent escape of bumblebees or entrance of parasites.
    4. Seal in frames and permanently close windows with reinforced glass
    5. Seal light fixtures, electrical service outlets, and other equipment that penetrates the walls, ceilings, and floors to prevent entry or escape of insects.
    6. Provide air-conditioning supply and return air ducts with filters.
    7. Ensure that drain system enters into a special waste trap; cover all drains in rearing rooms and work areas with small mesh.
    8. Have double entry doors well-sealed, with no cracks between the door and the jam.
    9. Close entry doors at all times, locking when room is unoccupied.
    10. Post warning sign at entrance to the rearing facility to deter entry of unauthorized personnel.
    11. Limit access to authorized and trained individuals only.
    12. Install blacklight traps in the back of all rearing rooms.
    13. Have all packaging take place within the quarantine area. Pack hives in escape-proof over boxes with mesh in the ventilation openings.
    14. Have warning signs on the outside of the over boxes, indicating that they contain North American bumblebee species.
    15. Clearly label (and translate as required) all bumblebee colonies for the species and provinces or states where this species is permitted for pollination purposes.
    16. In general, take all necessary precautions to prevent the escape of bumblebee species outside their endemic areas. For any escape, notify the CFIA immediately.
    17. Outline all protocols and procedures for operations and shipping of bees in a manual that is readily available to staff and regulatory officials.
    18. Autoclave in the quarantine area all equipment for the rearing of the original queens of field-collected bees.
  2. For greenhouse growers, the following practices are recommended as users of bumblebees for pollination:
    1. Wherever possible, consider greenhouse coverings that transmit high levels of ultraviolet light, as they have been shown to both increase pollination activity and reduce the frequency of bumblebees exiting a greenhouse.
    2. If possible, design all greenhouse doors and windows to make bee-tight.
    3. Design ventilation systems to maintain adequate air quality, including temperature, CO2, and moisture. It is recommended that thermostats, humidity detectors, and CO2 detectors could be installed to monitor these conditions. These could be tied to an alarm system.

Record Keeping

Maintain records for a sufficient period of time to enable effective and efficient traceback.

2.7 Maintenance Of Premises, Vehicles, And Other Equipment

Target Outcome

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

Description

Pests that survive on premises, buildings, vehicles, and other equipment can directly spread to bees. Buildings and equipment can also provide shelter to unwanted bees which can spread disease and parasites into your beekeeping operation.

Diseases can survive on wood and metal surfaces, and in carrier substances such as feed or water. If diseased bees are handled by vehicles and equipment, and then subsequently used to handle healthy bees, there is a risk that disease can spread. Other pests can survive on equipment, buildings, and unused bee equipment, although some for only short periods of time. Equipment that presents a housing environment for pests or bees should be cleaned or stored in a location that is not within direct access to healthy bees.

Managing, cleaning, disinfecting, and maintaining premises, buildings, vehicles, and other equipment in a manner that prevents or removes pests and unwanted bees will reduce this biosecurity risk.

Examples of pests that can survive on buildings, vehicles, and equipment include the following:

  • Nosema bombi (spores)
  • Crithidia bombi
  • Locustacarus buchneri (larvae)
  • Honey bee pests (chalkbrood)

The cleaning and disinfection process becomes particularly important for bumblebees in the case of hive disposal in situations where the hive is being replaced, either due to low pollination activity levels or to identification of the signs of potential pests. In these situations, it is important that the hive first be bagged and then removed. This is followed by mechanical removal of foreign material, sanitation, and finally disinfection.

Key Terms:

Designated cleaning area
A location on a premises or in a building that has been designated for cleaning activities.
Disinfect(ing)
The process of killing pathogenic organisms or rendering them inert. This is often done with a disinfecting agent, such as bleach, or by treatments, including heat, irradiation, or fumigation and may be done in conjunction with sanitation.
Sanitation (cleaning)
Any activity that physically cleans and removes foreign material from an object or surface. Sanitation alone may only reduce the risk of exposure to infection or infestation. Forms of sanitation include mechanical removal and (power) washing and may be done in conjunction with disinfection.
Mechanical removal (scraping, brushing or sweeping)
Sanitation procedures to remove foreign material from surfaces, using a brush, broom, hand, or other object. The brushing or sweeping motion is one that passes an object parallel over a given surface.

Recommended Practices

1. Premises Maintenance

  1. Remove unused bee hives and other equipment that could make homes for pests and bees from areas where bees are kept. This includes old vehicles, shelters, and farm equipment.
  2. Inspect new greenhouse locations or field sites before placement of bees, and remove any equipment or structures that can be used as pest or bee housing.
  3. Keep premises free of unused bee equipment.

2. Sanitation of Buildings and Equipment

  1. Clean and disinfect building and equipment to remove pests.
  2. Ensure that areas from where hive boxes are being removed are wiped or swept of debris.
  3. If disease is suspected on old hive boxes, disinfect the area following removal or before placement of a new hive box.

3. Maintenance of Buildings

  1. Ensure that buildings are kept in optimal condition.
  2. Have greenhouse growers monitor ventilation systems to ensure that they are functioning properly to maintain adequate air quality including temperature, CO2, and moisture. Thermostats, humidity detectors, and CO2 detectors could be installed to monitor these conditions. These could be tied to an alarm system.

Record Keeping

An electronic or hand-written record of cleaning and maintenance should include the following:

  • A monitoring log for greenhouse facilities or other buildings including
    • date and time;
    • facility ID;
    • location and condition of vent screens;
    • notes or readings (temperature, moisture, CO2); and
    • notes of any maintenance activities undertaken, including the individual who undertook the maintenance
  • A log of building, equipment, and vehicle cleaning including
    • date;
    • building, equipment, and vehicle ID;
    • cleaning activity; and
    • by whom it was performed.

Maintain records of cleaning and maintenance for a sufficient period of time to enable effective and efficient traceback.

2.8 Control Of Weeds And Nuisance Pests

Target Outcomes

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

Description

Weeds and unwanted vegetation growing in and around hives can

  • provide nesting sites for nuisance pests.
  • obstruct entrances to hives and inhibit bee foraging.
  • hold moisture that can deteriorate the base of the hive equipment or promote colony diseases that thrive in high humidity conditions.
  • obstruct the grower from performing routine inspections and managing the colonies.

A nuisance pest may disturb the colony, damage the hive, nest in or near the hive, consume bees and brood, rob food stores, and otherwise increase the bees' susceptibility to diseases and parasites. Nuisance pests may inadvertently spread diseases or other pests.

A weed is defined as any unwanted vegetation, including cultivated and volunteer crops, growing in and around a hive.

Nuisance pests include insects such as ants and wasps, and rodents such as mice and voles. For field placement of bumblebees, it may also include skunks, large mammals such as bears and cattle, as well as some birds. For this Producer Guide, the most serious insect pests of bumblebees (the Mellitobia parasitic wasps) are dealt with in section 1 Bumblebee Health Management.

Integrated control refers to integrated pest management (IPM) that utilizes monitoring techniques, as well as cultural, mechanical, and chemical controls. To minimize bee exposure to pesticides, cultural and mechanical control methods (e.g. mowing weeds, removing nests or nesting sites, pest proofing with mechanical barriers, and using traps) are advised. Weed and nuisance pest control protects the hive equipment from damage and facilitates grower access to the colonies for monitoring and management.

Mice may make nests in hives, consuming nectar substitute and sugar water. Mouse problems are more likely to occur in hive boxes that are located near woodlots or in fields.

Insectivorous birds, blue jays in particular, may eat bees as they are entering or leaving the hive box in field placements. Amphibians and reptiles may also eat bees, but they are not serious pests.

Insect pests agitate bees, and can make them more aggressive. Mellitobia wasps can be a serious biosecurity risk to a bumblebee hive. This naturally occurring parasitic wasp can adversely affect individual bumblebee hosts or the viability of an entire hive by attaching itself to a host queen and reproducing in large numbers. This is a problem that must be monitored, especially in the greenhouse environment.

Recommended Practices

1. Monitoring

  1. In field placements, with each visit to the hive box for routine monitoring, also monitor for weed growth, the presence of nuisance pests, and visual signs of infestation and disturbance such as
    1. toppled hives and obvious disturbance, damage to or theft of hive equipment.
    2. disturbance to surrounding vegetation.
    3. holes dug in front of hive entrances.
    4. scratches at hive entrances.
    5. bee parts and animal scat visible on the ground near the entrance.
    6. agitated and weakened colonies.

2. General Control

  1. Keep facilities and their surrounding areas free of old hive boxes, garbage, and other attractants.
  2. Feed bees in leak-proof, closed feeders, and avoid feed spills.
  3. Deter many larger nuisance pests by using dogs or solar- or battery-powered motion-activated devices that set off flashing lights or a loud noise.
  4. Move bees to a new location.

3. Weed Control

  1. Keep entrances and the perimeters of facilities clear of weeds and vegetation that could provide nesting sites for nuisance pests.
  2. Be aware that mowing around a hive box in the field is effective but may cause some disturbance to bees.
  3. If herbicides are used, apply products that are safe for use around bee yards, avoid application when bees are flying or when weeds are in bloom, and follow product labels. Check with the landowner before applying herbicides.

4. Mice Control

  1. Ensure the hive is as rodent proof as possible. Use rodent control measures such as traps, commercial poison bait stations, and cats.

5. Larger Mammals

  1. Stretch a piece of chicken wire or screening in front of the hive to discourage skunks and other animals from scratching at entrances. A board with many sharp nails pointing upward or toothed grips used by carpet layers may also be installed at hive entrances.
  2. If larger mammals have been a problem for field placement of bumblebees, consider installing an electric fence around the bee yard.
  3. For small hives, install a wire mesh or short (1 metre) garden fence, extended about 15 cm into the ground to prevent skunks from burrowing under.
  4. Keep colonies on stands more than 0.5 metres high.
  5. Consider, as another alternative, trapping and shooting small mammals, if deterrent methods are unsuccessful. Contact the provincial wildlife office for information and regulations.

6. Bird Control

  1. Repel birds by hanging visual deterrents such as CDs (compact discs) around the hives.

7. Wasp Control

  1. Remove material from around the hive that could act as wasp-nesting sites.
  2. Regularly monitor for, locate, and remove wasp nests.
  3. Apply insecticides to wasp nests with extreme caution to avoid exposure to bees.
  4. Use flyswatters.

Record Keeping

Record observances of nuisance pest damage by date and hive box identifier.

Record any chemical treatments or cultural controls by date.

Maintain records of the control of nuisance pests and weeds for a sufficient period of time to enable effective and efficient traceback.

2.9 Training And Education

Target Outcomes

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

Description

Staff: All those who work in the farming or greenhouse operation, including the owners, supplier industry, growers, their family members and hired employees. Greenhouse placement of bumblebee hives includes all those individuals who routinely work in the greenhouse, whether or not they have direct responsibility for the placement of the bumblebees.

Biosecurity training plan: Resource material is sourced or developed, and training and updates are delivered to staff to address the purpose, principles, and processes associated with bumblebee biosecurity.

Standard operating procedures, or SOPs, are written (and illustrated) step-by-step explanations of how to perform a task from beginning to end.

Recommended Practices

It is recommended that growers supplement their own knowledge and/or staff training by accessing resources available through government (Refer to Appendix B for provincial contact list), the CANPOLIN, and bumblebee suppliers and their distributors.

1. Standard Operating Procedures

  1. SOPs are developed and reviewed at least annually for the following processes:
    1. monitoring and reporting (monitoring methods, standard and elevated frequency);
    2. quarantine protocol;
    3. prevention methods; and
    4. record keeping.

2. Depth, Scope, and Content of Training

  1. The depth and scope of biosecurity training should be appropriate to the job scope of the staff member. However, all working within the operation should have a good general understanding of the purpose, principles, and processes of biosecurity.
  2. Depending on the level of involvement of the bumblebee supplier in the management of the hives that the crop grower uses for pollination, biosecurity training may include knowledge of the following:
    1. The grower should be aware of biosecurity principles, risks, and why biosecurity is important to the operation and the Canadian industry.
    2. Either the grower or supplier's scout must be trained in determining parasite counts and sampling for laboratory analysis. If the supplier or distributor's scouts are not conducting monitoring, the grower should be trained in monitoring and sampling procedures or have a protocol prepared for elevating the concern for investigation by their bee supplier. This would include monitoring procedures, signs, and symptoms (especially foraging/pollination activity levels) to look for while performing regular duties and triggers to report.
    3. The grower should know when the implementation of standard and elevated response plans should be triggered.
    4. Growers and staff are trained to recognize biosecurity risks, both common and uncommon, to the operation that could pose a potential biosecurity risk.
    5. These are the recommended practices for preventing the spread of pests while performing regular duties:
      • personal sanitation;
      • routine handling, maintenance, sanitation, and disposal of production inputs, equipment, facilities, and dead bees; and
      • procedures for introducing, handling, situating, and moving live bees.
    6. Current regulations governing:
      • registration,
      • bee purchase,
      • sale and movement permits,
      • notification,
      • treatments, as applicable
    7. Key contacts
    8. Record-keeping requirements within the operation:
      • system of identifying and marking hive boxes
      • hive monitoring and bee-foraging activity records
      • records of the destruction of hive boxes
      • maintenance records.

3. Timing and Frequency of Training

Staff members are

  1. trained when first employed.
  2. given an annual update or refresher on biosecurity at the start of each season.
  3. given updates as needed.

4. Training Methods

  1. Examples of training include the following:
    1. in-house staff orientation training sessions or meetings, delivered either by the grower, if knowledgeable about bumblebee biosecurity practices, or by representatives of the bumblebees supplier or its distributors;
    2. on-the job training by working under direct supervision; and
    3. attending demonstrations, seminars, or workshops offered by, for example, the provincial government, beekeeping associations, private organizations.

5. Support Materials

  1. Examples of support materials for use in training may include
    1. Bee Biosecurity Standard and this Bumblebee Producer Guide;
    2. written SOPs;
    3. informational materials from bee suppliers;
    4. videos;
    5. demonstrations;
    6. photos and illustrations;
    7. posters;
    8. examples with notes (e.g. product labels, report forms);
    9. memo postings and emails;
    10. workbooks or self-assessment checklists (paper or electronic); and
    11. bulletins, newsletters, etc. (paper and online).

Record Keeping

Keep a record of training for each worker.

Examples of records include the following:

  • title and/or certificate of attendance for seminars, workshops, courses attended;
  • individual training records, detailing training given and dates; and
  • a signed confirmation from each staff member that SOPs have been read and understood.
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