Skip to main content
NC State CVM
Think and Do The Extraordinary
GIVE to the College
Think and Do The Extraordinary
The Campaign for NC State CVM

Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Honey Bee Veterinary Consortium Conference

September 18, 2021 - December 31, 2021

As a result of the Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) issuance of the final rule, many veterinarians have reason to be concerned about apiculture (beekeeping) and honey bee veterinary medicine.  Honey bees now fall into veterinarians’ purview owing to the VFD rule and changes in FDA policy on medically important antimicrobials and you may be called on to treat them.

The Honey Bee Veterinary Consortium was formed following the advent of the VFD for honey bees. This conference will focus on what large scale or hobbyist beekeepers need, especially with regards to the VFD and disease management. Our mission is to educate veterinarians, novice and experienced apiarists on how to integrate veterinary care into beekeeping.

This on demand virtual conference will cover topics for the novice as well as the master beekeeper. Registration includes access until December 31, 2021 and downloadable/printable notes. This program has been approved for 18 hours of continuing education credit in jurisdictions that recognize RACE approval..

The conference will be held virtually and is hosted by the NC State University College of Veterinary Medicine.

Kate Anton, BA, MSc.  Pennsylvania State University

Humberto Boncristiani, MS, Ph.D.  University of Florida Honey Bee Research and Extension Lab

Mark Eric Dykes, BSc. University of Maryland

Jay Evans, Ph.D.  Bee Research Laboratory, USDA-ARS

Anne Marie Fauvel, BSc, MA. The Bee Informed Partnership, University of Maryland

Natasha Garcia Andersen, Fish and Wildlife Biologist. Fisheries and Wildlife Division. Department of the Energy and the Environment

Jerry Hayes, BSc, Editor of Bee Culture magazine

Margarita López-Uribe, MS, Ph.D. Department of Entomology. Pennsylvania State University

Samuel Ramsey Ph.D., Research Fellow with the United States Department of Agriculture’s Bee Research Laboratory

Allyson Ray, BS. Pennsylvania State University

Richard E.L. (Dick) Rogers, MS, Bayer

Kim Skyrm, Ph.D. Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources

Marla Spivak, Ph.D. Department of Entomology, University of Minnesota

Nathalie Steinhauer, Ph.D. Bee Informed Partnership

Robyn M Underwood, Ph.D. Pennsylvania State University, Department of Entomology

Dennis vanEngelsdorp, MS, Ph.D. Department of Entomology, University of Maryland


Secure Registration Here.

Topic 1: Introduction to the honey bee (Apis Mellifera) and beekeeping

Speaker: Mark Eric Dykes

Learning objectives: Basic honey bee anatomy and biology, basic beekeeping terminology, beekeeping safety, beekeeping practices


Topic 2: The eight components of an effective monitoring program:  The eight components of an efficient and effective program for monitoring the health status of honey bee colonies are identification, detection, measurement, recording, interpretation, decision-making, management, data sharing. Will elaborate on each component and how the program can evolve and improve.

After this lecture, you will be able to:

  1. List eight essential components of a practical monitoring program and describe the details and importance of each component
  2. Plan a monitoring program that is efficient, effective, and capable of evolving with new technology and feedback.


Topic 3: How to determine if a honey bee colony is healthy: There are three questions an apiarist needs to answer when inspecting a hive containing a colony of honey bees. Will discuss how to answer these questions using a protocol that is efficient and effective. The protocol can also be used to self-assess for knowledge gaps so learning/training can focus on topics where there is the greatest need. Also, standardized observations can enhance the value of honey bee inspection data for research that will benefit all beekeepers globally, and by making results more comparable and suitable for sharing and discussing locally.

After this lecture, you will be able to:

  • State the three questions that a beekeeper needs to answer at each inspection
  • List the six conditions that need to be assessed
  • Be able to identify the three sections of the Healthy Colony Checklist (HCC) form
  • Define what is considered a healthy state for each condition of a healthy colony
  • Systematically assess the health status of a colony
  • Use the HCC form to keep track of inspection data and simple notes
  • Identify and record details that will improve decision-making
  • Determine, schedule and manage tasks to maintain and restore colony health
  • Self-identify knowledge gaps for focused learning
  • Collate, summarize, explore, and share HCC data using appropriate software and templates

Speaker: Richard E.L. (Dick) Rogers, MSc (Bayer)


Topic 4: History of Honey Bee Diseases in America – Surprisingly interesting!

Learning objectives: This lecture presents a historical overview of honey bee diseases in the US. Attendees will learn how relative risks were and are evaluated and how solutions evolved in management practices to counter the impact and spread of the diseases.

Speaker: Dennis vanEngelsdorp


Topic 5: Varroa Anatomy and Why it Matters to The Bees
Varroa are well-adapted to being parasites of honey bees. Some of their most fascinating adaptations are difficult to see with the naked eye but with the help of the USDA Bee Lab and the Electron Microscopy Unit, you can see the mites from the bee’s perspective and learn why they’re so adept at being so destructive. Expect to leave this presentation with knowledge of the physiology of Varroa destructor and how treatment interventions exploit their anatomical adaptations for successful control.


Topic 6:Varroa Management: How Mites Should be Treated

Do you want to treat for Varroa but can’t figure out what treatment method is right for you? Well, have I got the presentation for you! Hear the how, when, and what of Varroa treatment. After this presentation you’ll be well-equipped to select the right Varroa treatment options for your beekeeping operation, treat colonies in a sustainable manner, and recognize when and why treatments may be losing efficacy.


Topic 7: The Honey Bee Landlord: Why Everything Wants to Live in the Hive
Ever wondered why so many creatures risk life and limb to live with a bunch of stinging insects that don’t want them there? What’s so alluring about living inside a honey bee hive and how have other creatures been able to dupe insects as smart as the honey bees into letting them stay? In this presentation, you’ll learn what creatures have invaded honey bee colonies, how they’ve tricked the bees into letting them stay, what consequences that has for pest managers and beekeepers alike


Topic 8: Drivers of Colony Losses: What the Data Actually Say

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong (H. L. Mencken). This sentiment is clearly evinced in the complex issue of heightened honey bee colony losses. While the data do not present a singular culprit, they do show how the interconnected web of natural and man-made stress factors have negatively impacted honey bee populations. These data further imply that there are actions we can undertake to help the bees. You’ll leave this presentation with a better understanding of the complex array of issues impacting honey bees, the ability to identify causes of colony loss, and recommendations for sustainable beekeeping to minimize the impact of these issues.

Speaker: Samuel David Ramsey


Topic 9:  Viruses in honey bees – how to diagnose and how to manage

Learning objectives: To gain exposure to and appreciation for the breath of different viruses that infect honey bees

  • Skills to identify signs of viral disease in colonies
  • Big 3 – deformed wing virus, sacbrood virus, paralysis viruses
  • What’s the difference between viral strains?

To understand how viruses transmit within and across colonies, and understand how the virus affects bees from the individual bee to the individual colony to the apiary level

  • Varroa destructor mites, mouth-to-mouth
  • “drifting” bees, combining colonies

Be able to relate honey bee viral disease to other stressors of bees (Varroa, bacterial pathogens, pesticide exposure, etc.)

  • E.g. Varroa and DWV; pesticide and viral disease

To learn prevention methods to minimize the impact of viral disease in honey bee colonies

  • Main takeaway – there are not many intervention methods to manage viral disease in honey bees. It is better to focus on prevention.
  • Cultural practices
  • Mechanical practices
  • No commercially available chemical treatments

Speaker: Allyson Ray


Topic 10: Bacterial infection of Honey bees Apis mellifera

Learning objectives: Symptomologies of the main bacterial infections of honey bees. Diagnostics tools for the main bacterial infections of honey bees. Current knowledge about available treatments.

Speaker:  Humberto Boncristiani


Topic 11: Beekeeping philosophy and the impacts of management on honey bee health

Learning objectives: There are many different ways to manage honey bee colonies, including a continuum of options for each decision that has to be made. During this lecture  we will talk about varying philosophies to learn about what drives management decisions. Then, we will discuss the results of a long-term research study that looked at three philosophies side by side. Attendees will be provided with a framework for discussing honey bee colony management and its implications for health and productivity.

Speaker: Robyn M Underwood


Topic 12: The Bee Informed Partnership; over a decade of honey bee health data in the beekeeping industry.

Learning objectives: By the end of the presentation, Veterinarians will:

  1. Differentiate between the concepts of honey bee population decline, colony losses and Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD).
  2. Synthesize the impact of Varroa infestation on honey bee health and the role (when & how) of monitoring for the pest.
  3. Interpret various metrics of colony health in the context of established baseline (resources) to recommend applied metaphylactic or corrective practices to improve colony outcomes.

Speakers: Nathalie Steinhauer, Bee Informed Partnership Science Coordinator / Anne Marie Fauvel, Bee Informed Partnership Tech Transfer Team Coordinator


Topic 13: Nutritional Needs and Foraging Regulation of the Honey Bee Colony

Learning objectives: This lecture will explore the collective and individual nutritional needs of honey bees. It will include a description of diet of all phases of development, through each of the casts. We will discuss the dynamic role of workers and the fascinating factors that regulate honey bee foraging of nectar and pollen at the colony level to better understand colony health, organization, and the importance of a diverse landscape.

Speaker: Kate Anton


Topic 14:  Honey Bee Social Immunity and Breeding

Learning objectives:

  1. Understand differences between individual immunity and social immunity
  2. Understand unique challenges in breeding honey bees due to queen bee mating system
  3. Understand when and how honey bees can care for themselves

Speaker: Marla Spivak


Topic 15: Genetic diagnostics and disease management in honey bees

Learning objectives: The talk will focus on three themes in honey bee disease, 1) Contrasting lab, PCR, and antibody-based diagnostics, 2) viral causes of disease and 3) discovery and regulatory steps for bee medicines. Attendees will learn current techniques for testing novel medicines for bees, field and lab disease tools, and the major causes of honey bee colony losses.

Speaker: Jay Evans


Topic 16: Wild Bees: Diversity, Ecology and Stressors of Non-Apis Bees

Learning objectives: This lecture will explain native bee populations (in addition to honey bees) and the interactions between native pollinators.

Speaker: Margarita M. López-Uribe


Topic 17:  Professional Commercial Beekeeping in the US.

Learning objectives: Connecting the audience to the size and successful and not successful unique management issues of migratory commercial beekeepers for this extremely valuable managed ‘livestock’.

Speaker:  Jerry Hayes


Topic 18: Working with Your State and Provincial Apiarist to Ensure Honey Bee Health

Learning objectives: Opportunities to collaborate and improve the relationship between apiary inspectors, beekeepers, and veterinarians.

Speakers: Kim Skyrm & Natasha Garcia-Anderson


Secure Registration Here.


Registration is for veterinary professionals, non-veterinary professionals (entomologists, etc) and beekeepers to attend.

Conference Registration:

HBVC Members $150

Non Members $200
Student Rate  $100

HBVC Membership $35 Click Here

Registration includes

  • Access to online content until December 31, 2021
  • Electronic Proceedings

Credit Card Payment required at time of registration


Secure Registration Here.

Platinum Sponsors   


Gold Sponsors

Silver Sponsors







September 18, 2021
December 31, 2021
Event Category:


NC State College of Veterinary Medicine

1060 William Moore Dr.




United States


Office of Continuing Education & Outreach