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Bee keeping: Officially Disease Free Status

We have successfully applied for additional health guarantees (protection measures) for our nation's bee population. EU Council Decision of 16 February 2015 accepted the Isle of Man as free of Varroa and permits us to prohibit the importation of bees.

The Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture ('DEFA') supported the Isle of Man's Bee Keepers through the introduction of the 'Bee Diseases and Pest Control (Isle of Man) Order 2008'.

This Order enabled the department, together with members of the industry, to complete a programme of testing for Varroa destructor (causes Varrosis of bees).

In order to maintain our status, bee keepers must continue to register their bee holdings under the provisions of the Bee Diseases and Pest Control (Isle of Man) Order 2008. Routine check testing will continue at a low level to ensure our status is upheld.

Failure to register your bee holding is unlawful and puts the health of the national bee colony at risk.

Anyone found to be in possession of bees on an unregistered holding will be deemed in breach of the above Order and risks prosecution.

To register your bee holding if you have not already done so, or for further information please contact:

Agriculture Directorate

Thie Slieau Whallian

Foxdale Road

St John's


Telephone:+44 1624 685844

Email:Send Email

Bee Diseases and Pests Control (Isle of Man) Order 2008

Bee holdings:

All bee keepers are required to notify the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture of the extent of their holding and the number and location of the hives they have.

Each bee holding will then be allocated a 'Bee Holding Number' (in the format of UK 019 XXX) and the keeper informed. Keepers have one month to notify DEFA of any subsequent change to their holding.

New bee holdings must be notified to DEFA within 7 days of the movement of bees or bee equipment onto the holding.


The keeper of bees shall ensure that a record is made of each:

  • transport of bees to or from the holding; within 3 days of such a movement.
  • transport of bee equipment or bee food to or from the holding; within 3 days of such a movement.
  • the creation of new hives on the holding from existing hives; within 3 days of the creation of a new hive.

All records shall be retained for a period of ten years and shall be made available for inspection, at any reasonable time.

A record template will be provided to all bee keepers by DEFA on the issue of a Bee Holding Number.

Notification of Suspicion of a Disease or a Pest: An owner or person in charge of a hive who knows or suspects that a disease or pest is present in the hive / holding shall immediately notify DEFA.

Apply now

American Foul Brood Varroa destructor (formerly called jacobsoni)
European Foul Brood Aethina tumida (small hive beetle)
  Any species of the Tropilaelaps mite


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