Main Speaker – Cybil Preston, State Apiary Inspector
Maryland Beekeeping, Bee Inspection,
What’s New with MD Dept of Agriculture
Cybil reported that beekeeping in Maryland is growing in all categories, which she attributes to the Short
Courses and community outreach provided by the area bee associations. Cybil, four part-time
inspectors, and her two trained dogs inspected 4430 colonies last year. The dogs make a difference in
the number and speed of colony inspections for American Foul Brood, but they only work during winter
when bees are not flying. The dogs primarily inspect the ~2000 colonies that travel from Maryland to
pollinate California almonds in February. Cybil and the other inspectors handle the other seasons.
The statistics for 2019:
# Beekeepers: 2161
# Apiaries: 2716
# Colonies: 15,923
The Apiary Program is short several inspectors and hopes to hire additional inspectors next February.
Anne Arundel is one of the counties that needs an inspector. Cybil has been covering the territory this
season. Contact her if you are interested in becoming an inspector.
Cybil also stated that Maryland is monitoring for Asian hornets (aka “Murder hornets”), but despite
fielding 800 calls reporting this insect, they were found to be European hornets (which have been here
since the 1800s) and cicada killers that people never noticed in their gardens before.