Honey Bees Fighting Back Against Varroa

Professor Stephen Martin

Since the arrival of the Varroa mite from Asia, millions of honey bee colonies have died. For decades, beekeepers have continued to control Varroa populations by the use of chemicals and other invasive methods. However, throughout Africa and most of South and Central America mite-infested colonies survive without any form of mite-control. This has been linked with poor mite reproduction, although what causes this has remained unknown. Throughout, Europe the USA and Wales an increasing number of naturally evolved, mite-tolerant colonies are been discovered. The talk will discuss the various tolerant mechanisms and how honey bee populations in Brazil, Cuba, Africa, USA and UK all appear to have evolved similar ways to combat the Varroa mite.

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