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» Economics » Parasitologie » Topics begins with V » Varroa mite

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Varroa mite
: (Chelicerata)
:Arachnids (Arachnida)
:Mites (Acari)
:Varroa destructor
Scientific name
Varroa destructor
Anderson one & Trueman, 2000

The Varroa mite (Varroa destructor) is as Adulte of approx. 1.6 millimeters small mite, itself with the honey bee, similarly a Blutegel with the mammal, festbeisst (around this into a size relation to set, this "Blutegel" would correspond to one with humans blood-August-ends rabbits). The actual development and Vermehrung that mite do not find however on the adult (adulten) bee, but in the capped bee brood. Therefore it acts with the Varroose (before: Varroa disease), then is called this parasite infestation, essentially around a breeding illness. Only in the winter term the mites change because of the missing brood on the bees, in order to survive.

To research purposes 1977 by scientists asiatic honey bees (Apis cerana) were gotten to Germany. With them in the luggage those came Varroa mite to Europe.

The name Varroa destructor was assigned in the year 2000 by Anderson and Trueman. Before it those was falsely regarded to mite among bee scientists as those already well-known kind Varroa jacobsonii (Oudemans 1984). V. jacobsonii is to be found however only in Southeast Asia.

Problem! The European bee

The asiatic bees get along with that mite, them leave their stick, if the parasite infestation excessively increases. Likewise they have the ability to recognize and remove stricken brood cells, in order to order so to the Vermehrung stop. Completely different the European honey bee, those is substantially "established" and to recognize by the ability lacking the infestation this parasite at the basis goes.


It lies in the nature of the bees that stronger peoples weaker out-robbed. If a bee colony is stricken by that Varroa mite, it is too weak to defend itself. With the of the weak peoples also mites change on the predatory bees. These bring along the mites as it were "in the luggage" and infect with it their own breedingin addition come that by the strong Monokultur in the agricultural cultivation in Europe the beekeepers are forced with the peoples quasi to "moving". This contributes additionally to a spacious spreading of the parasite.

Fight possibilities

On the one hand those provides mite for its fall, since she destroys her landlord quasi. But by the moving obligation of the beekeepers specified above this would mean the extermination of the European honey bee sooner or later. Thus one decided to move the parasite with different means on the body. Here however caution is required, since various means of arrears harm left and partly also the bee.

Alternative fight methods

If one considers the fact that the drone brood will strike about 8.6 times more frequently than those the worker bee can be begun in such a way on completely natural basis Varroa traps so mentioned. For this only the drone frameworks must briefly be removed before slipping. Many beekeepers set today additionally on the use of organic acids such as milk, Oxal or these acids or their salts come natural-prove in the metabolism of plants and animals, or even directly in some honey places forwards. Likewise ethereal oils (Thymol) are used against the Varroa.


The variant of the drone breeding withdrawal replaced not completely different fight methods, but offers it a careful treatment straight in the Trachtzeit and decreases thus a rising of the number of mites in the bee colony. The employment of the organic acids or the Thymols can take place then supplementing after the last honey harvest in the autumn and in the winter and prevents critical arrears, which could enrich themselves otherwise particularly in the Bienenwachs. With an appropriate concentration in the wax also the honey would be finally loaded. The acids are not fat-soluble contrary to the conventional treatment means, so that an enrichment is not possible in the wax. This proceeding is recommended by individual institutes for bee.

Breeding Varroa-resistant bees

The following text comes from beekeepers, strives and maintains with us in Central Europe a Varroa-resistant bee to breed here. That is, that one it wants to find and strengthen similar characteristics by selection, with the western honey bee, as her with the eastern honey bee, which are present original landlord that mite. To today's knowledge conditions an actual (scientifically more proven) break-through did not come however yet. Probably the difficulty lies in the fact that there was the necessity for an adjustment at the European races held with us the western honey bee never to this parasite. Possibly these characteristics are not at all present or only very weakly. Now the text:

With each Entmilbung takes place up to a certain degree also a selection under the Varroen. Those mites, which survive the Entmilbung and with the active substance best get along, completely equal which material this, become further increase and you may to be already somewhat adapted hereditary property pass on. Thus the foundation-stone for a better adapted mite population is created. New Varroa trunks develop. The Entmilbungen is used appreciably more ineffectively, new means and the happening begins again from the front.

To this one-sided selection toward better Varroa trunks can be met with the selection and breeding of bee colonies, which exhibit a strong natural Varroa defense. This natural Varroa defense exists primarily in the characteristic that the bees intercept and kill Varroa mites, mostly becomes thereby the legs of the mites abgebissen. This characteristic is hereditary, it works all year round and can by breeding be substantially increased. Selection and breeding on natural Varoaabwehr are difficult and with many problems connected, however already the leaving rules permit in each case a limited increase of the desired characteristics, these are however given, measurable and demonstrably.

Of many years it can be achieved by breeding that a Entmilbung (e.g. with formic acid) must take place only more approx. 2 times annually. The completely Varroa-resistant bee was not bred yet, but large steps in this direction were already done.

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