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(2023) CAUSES OF HONEYBEE COLONY DECLINE IN SOUTH ETHIOPIA. Online Journal of Animal and Feed Research. pp. 259-268. ISSN 2228-7701

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The purpose of this study was to identify the major causes of colony decline in the Gedeo Zone, South Ethiopia. Three districts, namely, Yirga Cheffe, Wonago, and Dilla Zuria, were purposefully selected based on beekeeping potential. A cross-sectional survey was conducted to collect data from 135 beekeepers and 15 key informants using a semi-structured questionnaire, focus group discussion, and personal observation of apiary sites. The results revealed two main causes of colony declines in the Gedeo zone: colony management-related factors and natural factors. Seventy percent of beekeepers lack the practical skills to perform hive inspection; 47 do not feed their colonies; 45 spray pesticides and insecticides near their apiaries; and 82 fail to control swarming. As a result, 87 of sampled beekeepers have experienced frequent colony absconding. The trends of colony decline showed an increase from 2008 to 2020 in the highlands and from 2008 to 2017 in the midlands and lowlands, respectively. The number of households facing colony declines increased in all agro-ecologies from 2008 to 2020. Pests and predators, like wax moths, and small hive beetles were take the first rank followed by ants, the inherent behavior of honeybees, a shortage of flora, and the presence of poisonous plants were the top five challenges among natural factors, respectively. Therefore, we strongly recommend educating beekeepers on scientific methods of colony management and planting bee flora. Laboratory diagnostics are required to identify bee diseases. © (2023). All Rights Reserved.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Apiary management; Apiculture; Bee diseases; Colony decline; Swarm
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
S Agriculture > SF Animal culture
Divisions: Online Journal of Animal and Feed Research (OJAFR)
Page Range: pp. 259-268
Journal or Publication Title: Online Journal of Animal and Feed Research
Journal Index: Scopus
Volume: 13
Number: 4
Publisher: Scienceline Publications, Ltd
Identification Number:
ISSN: 2228-7701
Depositing User: Dr. Saeid Chekani-Azar

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