12/03/2016 16:04 EST | Updated 12/04/2017 00:12 EST

Improving bee health focus of Saskatoon research convention

Bee researchers from across Canada swarmed in Saskatoon this weekend to share ideas on improving the health of Saskatchewan's bee populations. 

The annual Saskatchewan Beekeepers Association convention was held over three days at the Radisson Hotel Saskatoon. 

From Thursday to Saturday, the convention was abuzz with words like "neonicotinoids" and "imidacloprid" as researchers discussed the outcomes of their work. 

Saskatchewan Beekeepers Association president Jake Berg said some of the discussion related to bee diseases and how to treat them. 

"Healthier, stronger bees is what keeps us all in business and going," he said. 

"So it's huge for us to have all these researchers working all over in our province, across Canada and across the world, looking at different bee diseases, different pests, different effects of other outside influences such as pesticides." 

He said the researchers were also considering ways to tackle the ongoing problem of Varroa mites, which have been present in Saskatchewan bee populations for two decades.  

"A big part of the problem is in those 20 years, at any one given point, we usually only have one and sometimes two controlled products to use," said Berg.  

"So Varroa becoming resistant to our controls has been a huge issue for us." 

The conference wrapped up on Saturday.