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Resilient beekeeping in the face of Varroa

The honeybee industry contributes $264 million to the Australian economy in hive products, and $14.2 billion in pollination services to at least 35 industries (Clarke & Le Feuvre 2021). The ectoparastic mite Varroa destructor has long been recognised as the biggest threat to Australian beekeeping. Varroa has devastated industries overseas, resulting in beekeepers leaving the sector, large-scale losses (95%) of bee colonies, and effects on pollination services (DAFF, 2011). The recent incursion in Newcastle, NSW, has resulted in a biosecurity response to attempt to eradicate the mite. Should this be unsuccessful it is imperative that the industry be prepared to prevent or slow spread and adapt best practice for Australian conditions to ensure the long-term security of the industry and those that depend upon it for pollination. This project will systematically review the literature and make recommendations for biosecurity, treatment and management, breeding, health, viruses, and pollination continuation. The project will identify gaps in our knowledge that need to be addressed to ensure that the industry is best placed to avoid the catastrophic effects seen overseas.


Project date

8 Jan 2023-13 Dec 2023
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Principal investigator

Nadine Chapman

Research organisations

The University of Sydney (USYD)

Project funded by

Multiple industries
Alternative protein Aquaculture Cereal grains Cross industry Essential oils Fruits Game Honey bees Nuts Other rural industries Pasture, fodder & feed Poultry Pulse grains

AgriFutures Australia

AgriFutures Australia proudly focuses on building a rich future for Australian agriculture. We live and work in the regions and …

Multiple industries
Alternative protein Aquaculture Cereal grains Cross industry Essential oils Fruits Game Honey bees Nuts Other rural industries Pasture, fodder & feed Poultry Pulse grains
  • Location

    Australia

  • Organisation type

    Research funding body

Logo for AgriFutures Australia

Focus areas

Industries

Sustainabilities

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