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Metarhizium, a common fungus found in soils around the world, to work as a control agent against varroa mites

Interesting…

[snip]
A team led by Washington State University entomologists bred a strain of Metarhizium, a common fungus found in soils around the world, to work as a control agent against varroa mites. Unlike other strains of Metarhizium, the one created by the WSU research team can survive in the warm environments common in honey bee hives, which typically have a temperature of around 35 Celsius (or 95 F).

“We’ve known that metarhizium could kill mites, but it was expensive and didn’t last long because the fungi died in the hive heat,” said Steve Sheppard, professor in WSU’s Department of Entomology and corresponding author on the paper. “Our team used directed evolution to develop a strain that survives at the higher temperatures. Plus, Jennifer took fungal spores from dead mites, selecting for virulence against varroa.”…

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@SnowflakeHoney, Alan I read this article somewhere too, very interesting. There was also an article here on the flowhive forum about swarm bee hives that have been found ( can’t remember where though I’d guess somewhere in the US), that have been found to have mould in them, but also had no signs of AFB or Veroea Mite etc in them, yet commercial beekeeper’s hive (close by) did. I asked @Bianca if the placement of Mould in beehives might be a method of controlling current beehive pests could be tried, and here is a similar approach in this article that you have posted here.

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Wow, this is so interesting, thank you!

I’d love to understand more about how the Metarhizium is introduced and kept in the hive. Does it grow itself or does the beekeeper need to manage it in some way? Can you see it?

Does anyone have experience with feeding their bees mycelium extract to support their immune system and can tell me anything about this?