CHAPTER 111

PROVIDING FOR PROTECTION AND PROMOTION OF BEE KEEPING

AN ACT TO PROVIDE FOR THE PROTECTION AND PROMOTION OF BEE-KEEPING IN DELAWARE; TO PROVIDE FOR THE APPOINTMENT OF A STATE APIARIST AND BEE INSPECTORS; TO DEFINE THE POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE STATE BOARD OF AGRICULTURE, THE STATE APIARIST AND BEE INSPECTORS UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT; AND TO PROVIDE PENALTIES.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Delaware in General Assembly met:

Section 1. Definitions:--

A. The term "apiary" shall mean any place where one or more colonies of honeybees are kept.

B. The term "bees' shall mean any stage of development of the common honeybee, Avis Mellifera.

. The term "bee diseases" shall mean American or European Foul Brood or any other infectious or contagious disease pronounced detrimental to bee-keeping by the State Board of Agriculture or the State Apiarist.

A. The term "colony" shall mean the hive and its bees, comb, and equipment.

B. The term "hive" shall mean frame hive, box hive, barrel, log gum, skep, or any other container, or any part thereof, which may be used as a domicile for bees.

. The term "queen apiary" shall mean any apiary in which queen bees are reared or kept for gift or sale.

A. The term "bee equipment" shall mean hives, supers, frames, sections, wax foundation, wax, comb, and honey.

B. The term "appliances" shall mean any apparatus, tools, machine, or other device used in the handling of bees, honey, wax, and hives. It shall thus include smokers, veils, gloves, hive tools, extractors, as well as any container of bees, honey, or wax which may be used in an apiary or in transporting bees and their products.

I. The term "persons" shall mean individuals, associations, partnerships, and corporations.

J. Words in this Act shall be construed to import either the singular or the plural, as the case may be.

Section 2. Appointment of State Apiarist and Inspectors; Duties of State Board of Agriculture, State Apiarist, and Inspectors:--The State Board of Agriculture is hereby authorized and directed to appoint a competent State Apiarist, who shall have adequate experience in practical bee-keeping, and who shall work under the supervision of the State Board of Agriculture. The duties of the State Apiarist shall be to promote the science of bee-keeping by educational and other means, and to inspect or cause to be inspected apiaries, bees, and bee-keeping equipment and appliances within the State of Delaware. The State Apiarist is authorized to appoint one or more competent assistants, if needed, with or without pay, who shall be known as State bee inspectors. In the appointment of such inspectors, preference shall be given, insofar as practicable, to such individuals as have the recommendation of the local bee-keepers or an association of bee-keepers. Upon the written request of one or more beekeepers in any county of the State, the State Apiarist or the inspector shall within a reasonable time examine the bees in that locality suspected of being affected with foul brood or any other bee disease, and if such bees are found to be affected, he shall cause suitable approved measures to be taken for the eradication and control of such disease. In addition, the State Apiarist or the inspectors shall at least once each year, during the sum-me*, examine all bees in all known apiaries in the State of Delaware, and if any are found to be affected by a disease, he shall cause suitable approved steps to be taken for eradication and control of the disease.

Section 3. Right of Entry Into Private or Public Premises for Purposes of Inspection; Quarantine and Destruction of Diseased Bees, Equipment, and Appliances; Right of Owner to Appeal from Orders:--For the enforcement of this Act, the State Board of Agriculture, the State Apiarist, and the State bee inspectors shall have authority to enter upon any public or private premises, and shall have access, ingress, and egress to and from all apiaries or places where bees, bee equipment and appliances are kept, for the purpose of ascertaining whether foul brood or other bee disease exists therein; and if any disease exists in such apiaries it shall be the duty of the State Apiarist or the bee inspector, subject to approval of the State Board of Agriculture, to declare such Apiaries to be each the center of a quarantine zone in the form of a circle three miles in radius, and shall prescribe suitable measures to be carried out for eradication and control of the disease. Whenever the owners of such apiaries fail or refuse to take such steps as may be prescribed by the State Apiarist or the bee inspector to eradicate any disease from such apiaries, the State Apiarist may cause the diseased bees, together with any infected bee equipment or appliances, to be destroyed in such manner as he may deem best, after first giving to the owner fifteen days' notice thereof in writing and an opportunity to be heard, and shall take such further steps as he may deem necessary to prevent the spread of the disease. Any such owner may, within ten days of receipt of such notice, appeal from the decision of the State Apiarist to the Superior Court of the State of Delaware for the County in which such apiary, bee equipment or appliances are located, by filing therein a petition setting forth the facts and making the State Apiarist a party defendant. Such appeals shall be heard and determined by the Courts as expeditiously as possible.

Section 4. Registration of Bees with State Apiarist:--It shall be the duty of all persons keeping bees in this State to notify the State Apiarist in writing, on or before June 30, 1947, and thereafter within ten days of the time the bees are acquired, of the number and location of colonies they own, or rent, or which they may keep for anyone else, whether the bees are located on their own or someone else's property.

Section 5. Installation of Movable-Frame Hives; Precautions Against Spread of Disease by Exposure of Diseased Colonies, Equipment, or Appliances to Other Bees; Notification of State Apiarist of Existence of Diseased Bees in Any Apiary:--It shall be the duty of all persons keeping bees in this State to provide, prior to June 1, 1950, movable frames in all hives used by them, and to cause the bees in such hives to construct all combs in such frames so that such frames may be removed from the hive without injuring other combs in the hive, and so that all the surface of the combs may be examined visually.

It shall be unlawful for any person in this State to expose any diseased colony of bees, or any infected hives, equipment, or appliances so that flying bees may have access to them.

It shall be the duty of any person keeping bees in this State to notify the State Apiarist immediately of the existence or suspected existence of any bee disease in his own or any other apiary in the State.

Section 6. False Information or Interference with State Apiarist or Inspectors in Discharge of Their Duties:--It shall be unlawful for any person to give false information in any matter pertaining to this Act, or to hinder or resist the State Apiarist or the inspector in the discharge of his duties.

Section 7. Precautions of Inspectors Against Spread of Disease:--After inspection of infected bees, equipment, or appliances, the State Apiarist or inspector shall, before leaving the premises, take such measures as shall prevent the spread of the disease by infected material adhering to his person or clothing or to any equipment or appliances used by him which may have come in contact with infected material.

Section 8. Regulations Pertaining to Movement of Bees, Equipment and Appliances from any Apiary Known to Have a Bee Disease:--It shall be unlawful for any person to sell, barter, or give away, accept, receive, or transport any bees, equipment, or appliances from an ,apiary known to be affected with a bee disease, without the consent in writing of the State Apiarist, until all colonies in said apiary have been inspected by the State Apiarist or the bee inspector and the disease found, in his judgment, to be eradicated.

Section 9. Requirements Respecting Importation of Bees or Used Bee Equipment or Appliances:--No colony, nucleus, or combless package of bees and no used bee equipment or appliances coming into this State from a State or country having apiary inspection service shall be accepted by any person or common carrier for transportation into the State of Delaware unless accompanied by a valid certificate of inspection from the proper official of the place of origin, stating that the bees, equipment, or appliances are free from disease.

Any colony, nucleus, or combless package of bees, or any used bee equipment, or appliances coming into this State from a State or country having no apiary inspection service shall be immediately reported to the State Apiarist by the consignee and by the person or common carrier delivering them in the State of Delaware, giving the name and address of the consignee and a description of the shipment. The State Apiarist or the bee inspector shall then inspect the shipment at such time as shall be expedient. If he finds any bee disease in such shipment, he shall take such measures to control and eradicate it as he shall deem expedient within the provision of this Act.

Section 10. Regulations Relative to Raising Queen Bees:-- Every person rearing queen bees in the State of Delaware for gift or sale shall have his or her queen-rearing apiary inspected at least once each summer by the State Apiarist or inspector and on the discovery of any bee disease, such person shall immediately cease to ship bees from such diseased apiary until the State Apiarist shall declare said apiary free of disease and issue a certificate to that effect.

Section 11. Support:--The sum of Two Thousand Dollars ($2,000.00) is hereby appropriated annually from the General Fund, not otherwise appropriated, for the purpose of enabling the State Board of Agriculture to carry out the provisions of this Act.

This Act shall be known as a Supplementary Appropriation Bill and the funds hereby appropriated shall be paid out of the General Fund in the State Treasury not otherwise appropriated.

Section.12. Penalties:--Any person knowingly violating any of the provisions of this Act or any order or quarantine regulations issued by authority of this Act, or interfering in any way with the duly appointed representatives of the State Board of Agriculture in the discharge of the duties herein specified shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall be punished by a fine of Ten Dollars ($10.00) for the first offense and by a fine of Fifty Dollars ($50.00) for any subsequent offense.

Approved March 28, 1947.