Preprint Review Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Varroa destructor: A Complex Parasite, Crippling Honeybees Worldwide

Version 1 : Received: 24 February 2020 / Approved: 25 February 2020 / Online: 25 February 2020 (11:42:51 CET)
Version 2 : Received: 31 March 2020 / Approved: 2 April 2020 / Online: 2 April 2020 (12:16:16 CEST)

How to cite: Traynor, K.; Mondet, F.; de Miranda, J.; Techer, M.; Kowallik, V.; Oddie, M.; Chantawannakul, P.; McAfee, A. Varroa destructor: A Complex Parasite, Crippling Honeybees Worldwide. Preprints 2020, 2020020374 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202002.0374.v1). Traynor, K.; Mondet, F.; de Miranda, J.; Techer, M.; Kowallik, V.; Oddie, M.; Chantawannakul, P.; McAfee, A. Varroa destructor: A Complex Parasite, Crippling Honeybees Worldwide. Preprints 2020, 2020020374 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202002.0374.v1).

Abstract

The parasitic mite, Varroa destructor, has shaken the beekeeping and pollination industries since its spread from its native host, the Asian honeybee (Apis cerana), to the naïve European honeybee (A. mellifera) used commercially for pollination and honey production around the globe. Varroa is the greatest threat to honeybee health. Worrying observations include increasing acaricide resistance in the varroa population and sinking economic treatment thresholds, suggesting that the mites or their vectored viruses are becoming more virulent. Highly infested weak colonies, popularly dubbed “mite bombs”, facilitate mite dispersal and disease transmission to stronger and healthier colonies. Here, we review recent developments in the biology, pathology and management of varroa, and unearth old knowledge that was lost in the archives.

Subject Areas

Host-parasite; honey bee; varroa; virus; mite control

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