Healthy Bees: Managing pests, diseases and other disorders of the honey bee: AgGuide - A Practical Guide

NSW Agriculture
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The aim of this book is to provide bee-keepers with a guide to the common pests and diseases of bees.

Healthy Bees covers seasonal factors that affect the health of the colony, nutrition, non-infectious disorders, diseases, exotic pests, and strategies to prevent them.

Clear photographs to help you recognise and identify pests and diseases, and videos demonstrate collecting samples from your hive.


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About the author

Doug Somerville is employed by the NSW Department of Primary Industries as a Technical Specialist for Honey Bees. He has over 25 years experience assisting bee keepers and honey producers with

·      best management practices in keeping honey bees;

·      seasonal management enquiries;

·      disease/pest management processes;

·      starting out in bees;

·      progressing from an amateur beekeeper to a business in keeping bees.

Doug Somerville has beekeeping experience in the United Kingdom and Canada and has been a guest speaker at several international conferences. He also manages over 100 hives himself for research, honey production and pollination.


Jennifer Laffan has written many publications and training resources for the NSW Department of Primary Industries, including others in the AgSkills series.


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Additional Information

NSW Agriculture
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Published on
Feb 20, 2015
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Reference / General
Technology & Engineering / Agriculture / Beekeeping
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Doug Somerville
This Honey AgGuide is an essential manual for anyone wishing to remove and extract honey under the best possible conditions. It is also a reference manual for all serious beekeepers who wish to ensure they do everything possible to maintain the highest quality honey. It is focused on the commercial production and handling of honey, but also provides helpful information for recreational and side-line honey producers. 

This book informs beekeepers of best practices so that their hard work results in a product of optimum quality. It also describes the threats to honey quality which can occur through poor handling skills or poor design of facilities. It includes references to legislation about food production, where relevant. It shows the way to document procedures so that they can be used as evidence of best practice.



Part A is about:

·       safety of personnel

·       properties of honey

·       removing honey from the hive

·       transporting honey to the extracting facility.



Part B  is about:

·       the location and construction of the extraction facility

·       surrounding grounds

·       site as a food premise

·       design

·       mobile extraction facilities.



Part C is about:

·       the extraction process

·       extraction equipment

·       maintenance of the equipment

·       storage of honey.



Beekeepers and other food producers must have documented and traceable evidence that food materials have been handled safely and free from any contamination.

Part D of this book outlines the requirements for the documentation and provides examples of satisfactory ways to demonstrate compliance. This is the Hazard Analysis at Critical Control Points or HACCP for the honey industry.

David Brouwer

Farm Agskills is a comprehensive guide to basic farm skills. Learn about rope knots, wire knots, the basics of electric and conventional fencing, calibrating farm machinery, inoculating and lime pelleting legume seeds, estimating pasture yields, planting trees, soil testing and farm safety. Simple to follow with step-by-step instructions, diagrams, and full-colour pictures.

Farm AgSkills is part of the AgSkills series: books that provide clear explanations about a wide range of practical tasks performed in farming. Industry personnel and departmental officers have been involved in compiling these Agskills.




General safety precautions

Rope knots
The Clove Hitch
The Bowline Knot
The Hay Knot
The Quick-release Knot No. 1
The Quick-release Knot No. 2
The Sheet Bend Knot
The Crown Knot
The Back Splice
Animal Halter
Rope Headstall

Clearing and Sighting the Fence Line (including over a hill)
Erecting Fence Posts
Hanging a Gate
Running Out and Tying Off Wires
Constructing a Horizontal End Assembly
Building a Conventional Fence Step-by-Step
Safety Precautions for Electric Fencing
Wire Joining for Electric Fences
Earthing an Electric Fence
Temporary Electric Fences
Testing the Electric Fence
Building an Electric Fence Step-by-Step
Further reading

Inoculating and Lime Pelleting Legume Seed
Seed Drill Calibration
Boom Spray Calibration
Estimating Pasture Yields

Planting Tubestock
Direct Seeding Trees and Shrubs

Determine Soil Texture
Preventing Soil Structure Damage
Testing Soil Structural Stability
Measure Soil Acidity
Taking Soil Samples
Soil Infiltration

What is a Safe Work Method Statement?
Check your skill
Fencing Check your skill
Rope Knots Check your skill
Pastures Check your skill
Trees Check your skill
Soils Check your skill
Publishing Credits
Copyright Other Agskills books


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