Dr. Elina L. Niño

Picture of Dr. Elina Niño, Director of the California Master Beekeeper Program

Position Title
Associate Professor of Cooperative Extension - Apiculture, Department of Entomology and Nematology
Faculty Director, UC Davis Bee Haven
Program Director, California Master Beekeeper Program

  • Department of Entomology and Nematology, University of California at Davis, Davis, CA 95616
Briggs Hall RM 37D and Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility RM 117

My research interests are fluid and designed to address immediate needs of various agriculture stakeholder groups. Projects encompass bot basic and applied approaches to understanding and improving honey bee health and particularly honey bee queen health. Ongoing research projects include understanding queen mating and reproductive processes, discovery and evaluation of novel biopesticides for efficacy against varroa mites, and evaluating orchard management practices with a goal of improving honey bee health. Some of our more fun projects revolve around precision beekeeping and investigate the use of cutting edge technologies to make beekeeping more efficient and sustainable.

My primary responsibilities are in providing professional support and education to California's beekeepers, growers, pesticide applicators, and other stakeholder groups. I teach numerous beginner, intermediate and advanced beekeeping workshops, the culmination of which has resulted in the establishment of the first ever California Master Beekeeper Program serving beekeepers of California and neighboring states. I am also currently working on the development of apiculture education for veterinarians in collaboration with the Western Institute of Food Safety and Security (WIFFS). In addition to teaching formal workshops I serve on various commodity boards as a research liaison and adviser allowing me to directly impact California Agriculture.  

I greatly enjoy working with the community and especially with children. To ensure that our future researchers, agriculture leaders and innovators and future voters understand the importance of honey bees and other pollinators to our agroecosystems. Our Pollinator Education Program at the Häagen Dazs Honey Bee Haven garden currently works with the Farms of Amador County to serve third grade students and we are expanding. Our team recently partnered with  WIFFS and Turlock Unified School District teachers to bring a demonstration and research apiary and pollinator garden to the Turlock Student Farm providing career technical education.