This is a big day at the Beaverlodge Research Farm.
It is hosting the 64th annual Beekeepers Field Day.
Research Scientists Dr. Steve Pernal says a die-off of bee populations is still a concern.
“Since the winter of 2006 and 2007, in Canada and the U.S., we’ve seen higher rates of loss of bee colonies over winter. That trend, we think, is gradually improving in Canada, although there’s always some variability around that trend, depending on the severity of winter and various conditions.
He adds the farm has been working on this problem.
“Some of the work we have done here, with Agriculture Canada, is looking at some of the effects of newly-introduced parasites and some existing pathogens on bees and bee health and how to better mitigate and control those. Certainly, the survival of bees is a big concern for many people involved.”
As part of the day, Grande Prairie Regional College will be announcing details of a planned expansion of the National Bee Diagnostic Centre during an afternoon news conference. Dr. Pernal says the expansion is “very exciting” for the Farm.
“This summer, there’ll be quite a large expansion of that lab and the new facility will house combined labs, both for my program in bee research with Agriculture Canada, along with what the college is doing.”
The Filed Day starts at 10 a.m. There is no charge to attend. There is a free barbecue lunch at Noon.