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Honey Bee Virus Sampling Information and Some Casual Observations Regarding Essential Oils and Viruses

Hi Dave,

When we were speaking in Orlando, I recall you mentioned that you had used some essential oil mix that seemed to reduce the viruses present in your hives. I can't recall if you mentioned the name of the supplier or could not recall at that moment. If I remember correctly, you said he was a commercial beekeeper and sells the product. You gave me your card and I think I was to email you for the details.

Some of us have been discussing various essential oils and other such compounds and would be curious to know how to contact your supplier and to learn more about the product.

Thanks in advance.

Allen Dick


I apologize for not getting this back to you sooner. I have moved my lab to a new location and have had more things added to my to-do list than I want. With all that said we are up and running again and I am in catch-up mode.

The essential oils were used by a few beekeepers last year and I was able to pick up an observed decrease in the viral titers after the application of essential oils. This year we are putting a experimental approach to verify those observations and to give some data that shows the affects of the essential oils on bee health and viral loads.

The contact for essential oils is:

LeFore's Farm Fresh Honey
Jeff LeFore
53588 W. Crockett Rd.
Milton-Freewater, OR 97862
(541) 938-3104

I have shown that monitoring the viral load in bees is useful in monitoring bee health. By monitoring the viral load over time ( once a month) an observable change can be seen in viral titers (the number of virus particles), this can be linked to other factors that affect the bees such as nutrition, mite damage, pesticide damage, Nosema impacts, and a variety of other factors. The reports usually have a short turnaround time and helps with the timing of application of treatments such as the essential oils.

I would recommend a regular monitoring of your bees to establish a baseline so that we can take notice of adverse changes in your bees.

If I can be of further assistance let me know.

Best regards,

David Wick
BVS, Inc.
5501 HWY 93 N., Suite 6
Florence, MT 59833


Here is a portion of my presentation that I made at the conventions.
(attached).  The magnitude of the drop is significant.  From high to next to nil.  Now I have to say I had no controls and this was only observational over 20 colonies that I had tracked for over a year.  We are conducting anexperimental program on essential oils this year.

Yes you have my permission to quote me on anything I have given to you.

Please indicate that this was observational data.

The cost is $40 per sample.  One sample per 50-75 colonies per yard is fairly representative of that yard.

I am no currently constrained. If I have too much volume we can expand
without too much difficulty.


David Wick
BVS, Inc.

This was a casual test, however we were testing nearly 100 samples monthly from the same beekeeper. The colonies that had essential oils only were all similar to the charts that I sent to you. The ones that had other treatments with the essential oils as well had mixed results and the ones that had no essential oils were more typical in the continual increase in the viral load although not consistent, this is why we are conducting an experimental process that will verify these results, I hope. I have tracked these same colonies for two years and the viral load was and is somewhat predictable in the viral load.

I believe that the samples were taken from the top of the colonies, I am not sure of the exact location, I would have to refer to the data set. I do know that I have been successful in the training of the beekeepers to be consistent in sample gathering from the same location.

I hope this is helpful


Download the BVS bee speciment collection instructions document

Sampling Honey Bees for Viruses.

Download the speciment collection instructions document

The above charts are reproduced in more detail below


Download the BVS bee speciment collection instructions document

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