American Beekeeping Federation Sentinel Apiary Program

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This summer, the American Beekeeping Federation and the Bee Informed Partnership have come together to help members monitor colonies through the Sentinel Apiary Program. ABF will sponsor a portion of the cost for the first 50 members who participate in the program.

The citizen science Sentinel Apiary Program provides monthly sampling kits with instructions for monitoring Varroa mites, Nosema and health metrics in four colonies once a month for six months, along with an inquiry about demographics and management practices to collect the most useful data possible. Learn more about the program here:

Photos courtesy of BIP.

Participating beekeepers sample colonies and ship those samples and corresponding colony health and management information to the University of Maryland. Within two weeks, the beekeeper receives a report containing their own data back in a monthly report that includes a comparison to other beekeepers in the U.S. We encourage participating beekeepers to share their reports with their local clubs, and heat maps can be viewed on BIP's public map for all to see regional results.

The results will be presented during the 2020 ABF Conference & Tradeshow in January, and there will be a meet-up for the participants to discuss everything they learned through the program.

ABF is sponsoring $100 of the $275 cost of participation at the four-colony level for 50 members. Participating beekeepers will be responsible for the remaining $175, plus $5-10 per month for shipping samples via USPS.

Take advantage of this perfect opportunity to actively monitor your colonies while contributing to a large body of data used by researchers to improve honey bee health!

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