NSW DPI has detected varroa mite, which was confirmed as Varroa destructor, in biosecurity surveillance hives at the Port of Newcastle.
NSW DPI is working to protect the NSW honey industry by ensuring we eradicate the parasite.
Varroa mites (Varroa jacobsoni and V. destructor) are the most serious pest of honey bees worldwide. The mites are tiny reddish brown external parasites of honey bees.
On their own, individual mites are easily identifiable to the naked eye. Left untreated varroa mite will kill any bee hive it infects. All feral and untreated bee colonies will eventually die.
Drone bees are able to move varroa mites from hive to hive and even between apiaries. Mites are agile, move into hives quickly and transfer through contact between bees. There are strict quarantine requirements in place to protect the Australian honey bee industry.
Varroa infects honey bees in every major beekeeping area of the world, except Australia.
It is estimated that varroa mite could result in losses of $70 million a year should it become established in Australia.
Beekeepers are encouraged to inspect their hives regularly for signs of varroa mites.
If you see anything suspicious use the online form at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/hives, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline 1800 084 881.
You can register now here
You can use this form www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/hives before you register and let us know where your hives are located. There are no repercussions for not being registered.
No, people and organisations with native beehives do not need to report them.
No, varroa mites affect honey bees, they do not affect native bees.
For more information, see the varroa mite primefact.
Media release: Varroa mite incursion detected (24 June 2022)
Media release: Statewide Emergency Order issued for Varroa mite in NSW (26 June 2022)