Fire blight is a very dangerous bacterial disease of fruit trees, which will attack also some ornamental and wild coppice.
The fire blight originates from North America. It spread in Europe, first in Great Britain, then in Germany, and reached Switzerland for the first time in May 1989 in the canton of Thurgau. In Switzerland the fire blight was observed first in 1989. Since 1995 it has steadily spread. The infection proliferates mainly through the flower blossoms. That is why beekeepers are also concerned about this disease. Different studies have shown that bees may contribute to the speading of fire blight, as they carry the bacteria in their pollination activity from flower to flower. Measures have been taken in order to impede the rapid spreading. Moving of bee colonies from an infested to a non infested district is forbidden. Beekeepers may recieve the latest information regarding the spread of fire blight and the current restrictions at the cantonal plant protection offices.
Information from Agroscope on fire blight in Switzerland and restrictions for moving bee colonies is available at: www.feuerbrand.ch.