VIENNA, March 14 (Xinhua) — Austria is to see enormous losses to its bee population this year, with experts anticipating a high death rate, the Krone newspaper reported on Tuesday.
In addition, he said the phenomenon will be seen across the entire European Union.
Boigenzahn said the notably cold 2016/2017 winter would not have had much effect, with bees able to withstand significant cold particularly with stable temperatures. Instead, mites are mostly responsible, particularly the varroa destructor variety.
Monarch butterfly numbers in North America have decreased and the rate of over-winter honey bee colony loss has doubled in recent years. GMO crops and pesticides such as neonicotinoids have been blamed, but what does the most up-to-date science have to stay about their relationships with these important pollinators? It’s complicated, says Dr. Ric Bessin, an entomology professor at the University of Kentucky, but a host of other factors, from monarch habitat loss in Mexico to parasitic mites in bees, are likely more important.
Summary: A core set of genes involved in the responses of honey bees to multiple diseases caused by viruses and parasites has been identified by an international team of researchers. The findings provide a better-defined starting point for future studies of honey-bee health, and may help scientists and beekeepers breed honey bees that are more resilient to stress.
“In the past decade, honey-bee populations have experienced severe and persistent losses across the Northern Hemisphere, mainly due to the effects of pathogens, such as fungi and viruses,” said Vincent Doublet, postdoctoral research fellow, University of Exeter. “The genes that we identified offer new possibilities for the generation of honey-bee stocks that are resistant to these pathogens.”
A study of the Tropilaelaps mercedesae genome has revealed that conventional mite control strategies might not work.
AsianScientist (Mar. 7, 2017) – The genome of the parasitic bee mite Tropilaelaps mercedesae suggests that existing methods to prevent bee colony collapse might be ineffective. These findings have been published in GigaScience.
Although there are many potential causes for the decline in honey bee colonies, pathogens and parasites of the honey bee, particularly mites, are considered major threats to honey bee health and honey bee colonies. The bee mite T. mercedesae is honey bee parasite prevalent in most Asian countries, and has a similar impact on bee colonies that the globally present bee mite Varroa destructor has. With the global trade of honey bees, T. mercedesae is likely become established world-wide.
Dr. Lilia De Guzman is a Research Entomologist. She has studied varroa and tracheal mite resistance of Yugoslavian and Russian bees. Her current focus is grooming behavior by Russian honey bees against varroa mites, and finding methods that reduce the impact of small hive beetles in honey bee colonies.
Josh Kennet is a beekeeper from Tintinara, Australia. He knows how important bees are to our ecosystem, so, when he learned that a deadly disease known as American foulbrood was wiping out thousands of hives in south Australia, he and his dog Bazz helped out in a most unique way.
Bazz was trained by Josh to sniff out the American foulbrood scent. Through a lot of trial and error, he designed a special suit for Bazz so he could approach beehives without getting stung.