Beekeepers breed stronger bees to fight mite epidemic

June 20, 2016

From: Pulse Headlines

By Daniel Francis

Many beekeepers have been forced to breed stronger bees due to the devastating effects of the Varroa mite in bee colonies.

Since the insect’s arrival to the U.S. in the 1980’s honey bee populations have been steadily dropping. Even if beekeeping has become a more modern practice, it is estimated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture that over 50 percent of the country’s bee colonies have perished. That’s almost 3 million honey bee colonies that have disappeared, either from disease or due to human activity.

Fighting bee population decline through selective Breeding

This phenomenon was noted by the Northwestern Pennsylvania Beekeepers Association (NWPBA) as they held a meeting last Saturday. NWPBA’s president Charlie Vorisek stated that last winter, he had lost almost half of his bees. These numbers have become typical for him and other beekeepers.

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