BIP Mobile Bee Diagnostic Lab

Our Bee Informed work trucks serve as virtual mobile bee labs, and are stocked with everything we need to take a variety of samples. On this particular day, the Pacific Northwest Tech Transfer Team was preparing to take virus samples in addition to the standard varroa/Nosema testing, as part of a longitudinal USDA study on bee viruses. Each individual bee will be tested (rather than the typical composite sample) to determine the type, variation and scope of viruses present. Numbered tags are stapled on each colony so they can be found again and longitudinally monitored over many months. The cardboard box contains a cooler full of dry ice that will be shipped overnight to the lab for virus processing. The 100-bee samples need to be frozen right away to prevent degradation of the virus replicates. Please help us continue to provide these specialized services and donate now to keep our mobile lab well stocked!


Written By: Ben Sallmann

Ben Sallmann has written 12 post in this blog.

As part of the Pacific Northwest Tech Transfer Team, I work closely with beekeepers and breeders in the region and assist with colony assessments, disease monitoring, sampling for pesticides and viruses, and testing breeder colonies for hygienic behavior. My interest in bees began as a child working on our family’s apiary/organic vegetable farm in Wisconsin, and I joined BIP in the summer of 2013 in order to be more involved with hands on research that benefits beekeepers in a tangible way. I began my work with BIP based out of the University of California Cooperative Extension office in Butte County, CA, but in 2017 moved to Oregon to work with the Pacific Northwest team, based out of OSU in Corvallis.