Utah Department of Agriculture and Food

Bee Death Investigation Results


No Pesticide Violations Found In Farr West Investigation

For Release: July 14, 2016

(Salt Lake City) Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF) investigators met with a Farr West beekeeper who reported the deaths of one to two dozen bees following a June 29 pesticide application by the Weber Mosquito Abatement District.  Bee hives typically contain 30,000 to 50,000 bees.  

     After a thorough investigation conducted by pesticide compliance officials and entomologists, it was determined that no pesticide violations had occurred and that the hive in question was alive and apparently healthy.  

     Investigators found and collected about a dozen dead bees reported by the beekeeper.  Accurate chemical analysis of bees suspected of contacting pesticides requires a minimum test sample size of 150 bees.

     “Because so few bees were found dead, we were unable to have sufficient numbers to submit a sample to the lab,” said Scott Oldham, UDAF pesticide program manager.

     Investigators audited application records and reviewed the pesticide product label used to determine if any violations had occurred. The investigation found that the Weber Mosquito Abatement District had followed pesticide product label instructions and state rules.

     One way that can help prevent accidental pesticide contact with bees is for beekeepers to register their location with the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food at: http://ag.utah.gov/plants-pests/beekeeping.html

    Oldham encourages that all stakeholders, both beekeepers and pesticide applicators work together to prevent any unnecessary pesticide exposure to beehives.

     The UDAF’s Managed Pesticide Protection Plan (MP3) is available at www.ag.utah.gov/

Contact: Larry Lewis (801) 538-7104
 Cell (801) 514-2152
Scott Oldham (801) 538-7183



posted: July 14, 2016