Collect and preserve bee samples for Varroa mite or Nosema test.

  • For live sample collection:

    • Select a frame from the brood chamber of a live colony. If possible, the frame should contain some capped and uncapped brood.
    • Shake live bees from the frame into a container such as a wash basin or bucket.
    • Using a ½ measuring cup, scoop a level cup (~300 bees) into a clean container filled with either 70% isopropyl alcohol or windshield wiper fluid.
    • Plastic containers can be provided by the Vermont Bee Lab upon request. Additional containers are located in the drop off box at the University of Vermont Horticultural Farm (please take no more than 5 at a time). Mason or recycled jars are acceptable to use as long as they are clean.
    • Label all sample containers with hive ID, collection date, apiary name, beekeeper name (Note: permanent marker may rub off with alcohol.)
  • For dead-out sample collection:

    • Collect 1/2 cup of bees (~300) from the cluster (not off the bottom board)

    • Bees should not be moldy

    • Store sample of bees in 70% ethanol or windshield washer fluid until they can be brought to the lab

  • Fill out a sample submission form BEFORE shipping or delivering samples to the Bee Lab.

  • You can either fill out the online sample form or the printed PDF form.

  • If using the printed PDF, enclose this form with your samples in a bag upon delivery or shipment.

  • Make sure to select wether you are submitting a live sample or a dead-out sample on the form.

Submitting samples.

  • You may hand deliver samples along with printed forms to one of our drop box locations:

    • UVM Horticulture Farm: 65 Green Mountains Dr., South Burlington, VT

    • Moore Free Library: 23 West St. Newfane, VT

    • Bent Northrup Library: 164 Park St., Fairfield, VT

  • You may send samples to the lab through the USPS. Due to the inclusion of alcohol in the samples, USPS Retail Ground, Parcel Select or Parcel Select Lightweight. Send properly sealed and labeled containers along with appropriate paperwork to the lab at:

​Vermont Bee Lab
​Jeffords Building, Room 220
​63 Carrigan Drive, Burlington, VT

Report results.

  • Once your samples are processed, you will receive a report of results via email from our team.

More details can be found in the FAQs section and sample collection tutorial video