Archives – July, 2014

Beekeeper’s urged to attempt genetic breeding

From: ABC/Rural

James Jooste

Beekeepers in Australia are being told to breed healthier bees to protect themselves from a colony killing pest.

Australia is the last country free of the deadly Varroa mite that spreads a virus capable of wiping out honey production.

Dr Jay Evans from the United States Department of Agriculture, says if this country wants to protect the honey industry it needs to act now.

“So there can be selection for resistance to the virus now, even prior to the arrival of mites and that may actually give a buffer of healthy bees in the unfortunate event that mites actually become established in Australia” he said.

Leave a Comment July 9, 2014

Why are Newfoundland’s honey bees parasite free?


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Some honey bee colonies in Newfoundland, Canada, are free of invasive parasites found elsewhere in the world. Scientists say the discovery offers a unique opportunity to investigate honey bee health.

“Invasive parasites—such as Nosema ceranae, a fungus, and Varroa destructor, a mite—have incurred heavy economic penalties on the honey bee industry via colony losses and reduced productivity of surviving colonies, and both parasites threaten global food security because of reduced pollination services to agriculture,” says Nancy Ostiguy, associate professor of entomology at Penn State.

Leave a Comment July 7, 2014

Little mite a big worry

From: Queensland Country Life

AUSTRALIA’S apple, blueberry and cherry growers have been urged to develop relationships now with beekeepers to help in the event of an incursion of the deadly Varroa mite.

A recent survey shows the majority of growers believe their crops’ quality and quantity will be significantly affected if something happens to the honeybees they rely on for pollination.

Growers were asked about their pollination practices as part of efforts to prepare for the likely arrival of the Varroa mite.

Currently, Australia is the only continent free of the pest, which is devastating honeybee and horticultural industries worldwide.

Leave a Comment July 2, 2014

Parasite-free honey bees enable study of bee health


by A’ndrea Elyse Messer

An international team of researchers has discovered honey bee colonies in Newfoundland, Canada, that are free of the invasive parasites that affect honey bees elsewhere in the world. The populations offer a unique opportunity to investigate honey bee health, both with and without interfering interactions from parasites.

Leave a Comment July 1, 2014

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