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Honeybee Colonies

Honeybee Colonies

State Honey Bee Colonies Down 12,500


South Dakota Ag Connection - August 7, 2018

UNDATED - Honey bee colonies for operations with five or more colonies in South Dakota as of January 1, 2018 totaled 23,000 according to the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service. The number of colonies in South Dakota on April 1, 2018 was 10,500. During 2017, honey bee colonies on January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1 were 21,000, 30,000, 152,000, and 111,000, respectively.

Honey bee colonies lost for operations with five or more colonies during the quarter of January-March 2018, was 390 colonies or 1 percent lost. During April-June 2018, 12,000 colonies or 7 percent of colonies were lost. The quarter of July-September 2017, at 16,500 or 10 percent, showed the highest number of lost honey bee colonies of any quarter during 2017. The quarter of January-March 2017 had a loss of 2,700 colonies or 6 percent, the lowest number of honey bee colonies lost in 2017.

Honey bee colonies added for operations with five or more colonies during the quarter of January-March 2018, was 250 colonies. The number of colonies added during the April-June 2018 quarter was 21,000. The quarter of April-June 2017, added 10,000 colonies, the highest number of honey bee colonies added for any quarter in 2017. The quarter of October-December 2017, at 0, showed the lowest number of honey bee colonies added during 2017.

Honey bee colonies renovated for operations with five or more colonies during the quarter of January-March 2018, was 90 colonies. The number of colonies renovated during the quarter of April-June 2018 was 65,000. During April-June 2017, 23,000 colonies were renovated, the highest number of colonies renovated during 2017. The lowest number of honey bee colonies renovated for any quarter, at 0, occurred during October-December 2017. Renovated colonies are those that were requeened or received new honey bees through a nuc or package.

Varroa mites were the number one stressor for operations with five or more colonies during all four quarters in 2017. The quarter of July-September 2017 showed the highest percentage of varroa mites in 2017, at 47.4 percent. The percent of colonies reported to be affected by varroa mites during January-March 2018, and April-June 2018 were 4.4 percent and 53.3 percent, respectively.



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