Scientists, beekeepers unite to stop parasitic varroa mite from threatening Australia’s honey industry

August 21, 2014

From: Australian Broadcasting Corporation/News

By Selina Bryan

The Tasmanian Government, CSIRO and beekeepers have teamed up to fight a pest that could threaten Australian food production.

The varroa destructor is a parasitic mite that attacks honey bees.

Around the world it has already reduced honey bee numbers and affected food crop pollination.

“Estimates from a report released last year have put [the potential cost] to at least about $1.3 billion over the next 30 years,” said Stephen Quarrell, an entomologist from the University of Tasmania.

It has not yet appeared in Australia but scientists have warned the mite has the potential to devastate Australia’s agriculture sector.

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