Colony Health Monitoring

What is the Colony Health Monitoring Program?

The Colony Health Monitoring (CHM) program provides Alberta beekeepers with apiary disease reports based on colony inspection and laboratory analysis. Beekeepers can then use this information to evaluate their Integrated Pest Management (IPM) plan and make changes if needed.






How it works

  • Beekeepers can select up to 3 apiaries to be sampled twice a year (late spring & early fall).
  • 10 colonies per apiary are inspected for disease and Varroa samples are taken.
  • 1 pooled live bee sample is taken per apiary for the analysis of Nosema, AFB, EFB, and viruses.

We will provide guidance on best management practices based on your results and our understanding of your IPM plan. Our job is not to interfere or police beekeeper management strategies but to provide guidance.

Your Results

Shortly after the TTP team visits your apiaries, you will receive a series of diagnostic reports:

  • Day of field report with colony inspection data and Varroa levels.
  • Preliminary report containing the Varroa and Nosema results (1-2 weeks after)
  • Final report with the AFB, EFB, and virus results added (2-4 weeks after)

All sampling visits are scheduled with the beekeeper in advance and beekeepers are always welcomed (and encouraged) to join us in the field, give us a call, or email with questions!

Service Options

  • CHM Option 1 – Spring and Fall sampling for: Varroa, AFB, EFB, Nosema, 4 Viruses
  • CHM Option 2 – Spring and Fall sampling for: Varroa, AFB, EFB, Nosema
  • CHM Pollinators – Spring, Summer, and Fall sampling for: Varroa, AFB, EFB, Nosema, 4 Viruses plus BQCV
  • CHM Self-sampling – Spring and Fall sampling for: Varroa, AFB, EFB, Nosema, 4 Viruses

The self-sampling option is offered at a discounted rate. Beekeepers participating in the self-sampling program will receive all sampling supplies, instructions, and mailing labels in advance.







Why Participate in the CHM Program?

  • Continuous colony monitoring and the implementation of best management practices has been shown to improve bee health, pollination, honey production, and to reduce annual bee losses, use of antibiotics, and overall operating costs for beekeepers.
  • An effective Integrated Hive Management (IHM) program includes continuous evaluation so that adjustments can be made as necessary to ensure the success of a beekeeping operation.

Colony health monitoring makes a difference! Beekeepers in the U.S participating in a similar disease monitoring program reported an average winter loss of 10% lower than beekeepers that do not use monitoring programs.


“Busy Bee Farm Ltd. appreciates the services of the TTP team through the 2021 season. The information collected complements our in-field observations and aids us in our decision making on how to manage our hives through the year and prepare them for winter. Special thanks to Renata and Emily and we look forward to working with the team in the next oncoming years.”

– Busy Bee Farm

“In using the expertise of The Tech Transfer Program, we confidently incorporate pest-management strategies to optimize our hive’s survival.”

– Scandia Honey Company

 “The Tech Transfer program has proven to be an invaluable resource for our operation. Renata and her team are always very helpful in providing updated information and treatment recommendations for all bee diseases. The classroom session is interactive and always informative for our hispanic workers.”

– Wolfe Honey Company

CHM Annual Reports



Reach out at any time to inquire about our CHM program, we are happy to help!


Alberta Tech Transfer Program

T: (780) 489-6949



Renata Labuschagne

Tech Transfer Program Lead


Nicole McCormick

Tech Transfer Program Lead Technician