American foulbrood: A threat to honeybee populations

June 4, 2018

The bacterial disease is widely contagious and can kill entire hives.

With the FDA's policy change requiring that all food-producing animals have antibiotic orders written by veterinarians, honeybees have come under the umbrella of veterinary care. Bee expert and Fetch dvm360 conference speaker Chris Cripps, DVM, is here to describe affliction that is a serious threat to honeybees-one which veterinarians should be familiar with.

American foulbrood is such a destructive disease because, as Dr. Cripps explains, it is contagious over surprising distances. And if a hive is infected, it may send up a spurious red flag to a neighboring colony.

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"Bees from three miles away may sense that that hive is weak and come try to steal the honey and resources from those [infected] bees," he says. "When they get that honey, they also take back some disease, and now their hive can be diseased as well."

This constitutes a "public health threat for bees," as Dr. Cripps puts it.

Watch the video for more.

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