Area USDA honey bee colony reports

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South Dakota

Sioux Falls – Honey bee colonies for operations with five or more colonies in South Dakota as of January 1, 2016 totaled 30.0 thousand according to the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. This is 40 percent below the 50.0 thousand colonies on January 1, 2015. During 2015, honey bee colonies on April 1, July 1, and October 1 were 100 thousand, 295 thousand, and 194 thousand, respectively.

Honey bee colonies lost for operations with five or more colonies during the quarter of January- March 2016, was 770 colonies or 1 percent lost. This is the least honey bee colonies loss of the most recent five quarters. The quarter of July-September 2015, at 53.0 thousand or 18 percent, showed the highest amount of lost honey bee colonies.

Honey bee colonies added for operations with five or more colonies during the quarter of January- March 2016 was 30 colonies. This is the least amount of honey bee colonies added of the most recent five quarters. The quarter of April-June 2015, added 27.0 thousand colonies, the highest number of honey bee colonies added.

Operations with five or more colonies renovated no colonies during the quarter of January-March 2016. The number of colonies renovated during the quarter of January-March 2015 was 2.80 thousand. The highest number of honey bee colonies renovated for any quarter, at 23.0 thousand, occurred during April-June 2015. Renovated colonies are those that were requeened or received new honey bees through nuc or package.

Varroa mites were the number one stressor for operations with five or more colonies during each of the quarters surveyed. The quarter of July-September 2015 showed the highest percentage of varroa mites at 22 percent.

North Dakota

Fargo, N.D. – Honey bee colonies for operations with five or more colonies in North Dakota as of January 1, 2016 totaled 82.0 thousand according to the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. This is 44 percent above the 57.0 thousand colonies on January 1, 2015. During 2015, honey bee colonies on April 1, July 1, and October 1 were 121 thousand, 460 thousand, and 230 thousand, respectively.

Honey bee colonies lost for operations with five or more colonies during the quarter of January- March 2016, was 17.0 thousand colonies or 10 percent lost. The quarter of July-September 2015, at 93.0 thousand or 19 percent, showed the highest amount of lost honey bee colonies. The quarter of January-March 2015 had a loss of 620 colonies or 1 percent, the least honey bee colonies loss of the most recent five quarters.

Operations with five or more colonies added no colonies during the quarter of January-March 2016. The quarter of April-June 2015, added 39.0 thousand colonies, the highest number of honey bee colonies.

Operations with five or more colonies renovated no colonies during the quarter of January-March 2016. The number of colonies renovated during the quarter of January-March 2015 was 530. The highest number of honey bee colonies renovated for any quarter, at 61.0 thousand, occurred during April-June 2015. Renovated colonies are those that were requeened or received new honey bees through nuc or package.

Varroa mites were the number one stressor for operations with five or more colonies during each of the quarters surveyed. The quarter of July-September 2015 showed the highest percentage of varroa mites at 33.8 percent.

Minnesota

Honey bee colonies for operations with 5 or more colonies in Minnesota as of January 1, 2016 totaled 37.0 thousand colonies. This is 32 percent above the 28.0 thousand colonies on January 1, 2015. During 2015, honey bee colonies on April 1, July 1, and October 1 were 71.0 thousand, 133 thousand, and 104 thousand, respectively. The quarter of July-September 2015 had the largest maximum number of colonies, with 136 thousand, while January-March 2016 had the smallest maximum number of colonies with 39.0 thousand.

Honey bee colonies lost for operations with 5 or more colonies during the quarter of January-March 2016 was 6,000, 62 percent more than 3,700 lost during the same quarter the year before. The quarter of July-September 2015 had a loss of 32.0 thousand colonies or 24 percent of the maximum colonies, the highest honey bee colony loss of the 5 quarters. The quarter January-March 2015, at 3,700 or 5 percent, showed the smallest loss.

Varroa mites were the number one stressor for operations with 5 or more colonies during 3 quarters in 2015 and the number two stressor during the remaining 2 quarters surveyed. The quarter of October-December 2015 showed the highest percentage of varroa mites, with 43.6 percent of Minnesota’s honey bee colonies affected.

Nebraska

Lincoln, Neb. – Honey bee colonies for operations with five or more colonies in Nebraska as of January 1, 2016 totaled 10.5 thousand. This is 5 percent above the 10.0 thousand colonies on January 1, 2015. During 2015, honey bee colonies on April 1, July 1, and October 1 were 29.0 thousand, 67.0 thousand, and 72.0 thousand, respectively.

Honey bee colonies lost for operations with five or more colonies during the quarter of January-March 2016, was 330 colonies or 2 percent lost. This is the lowest number of colonies lost during the most recent five quarters. The quarter of October-December 2015 had a loss of 7.0 thousand colonies or 10 percent, the highest honey bee colonies loss of the five quarters.

Honey bee colonies added for operations with five or more colonies during the quarter of January-March 2016 was 40 colonies. The quarter of April-June 2015, added 15.5 thousand colonies, the highest number of honey bee colonies added of the five quarters. The quarter of October-December 2015, at 10 colonies, showed the least amount of honey bee colonies added.

Honey bee colonies renovated for operations with five or more colonies during the quarter of January-March 2016 was 30 colonies. This is the lowest number of colonies renovated during the five most recent quarters. The number of colonies renovated during the quarter of January-March 2015 was 310 or 1 percent. The highest number of honey bee colonies renovated for any quarter, at 6.0 thousand, occurred during July-September 2015. Renovated colonies are those that were requeened or received new honey bees through nuc or package.

Varroa mites were the number one stressor for operations with five or more colonies during four out of the five quarters surveyed. The quarter of January-March 2016 showed varroa mites at 1.7 percent. The quarter of July-September 2015 showed the highest percentage of varroa mites at 33.2 percent affected.