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Varroa has arrived in Australia

Bad news for Australia, let’s hope Biosecurity manage to find and eradicate all affected colonies. Currently only the one colony on a ship in port Melbourne. http://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2018-06-29/varroa-mite-detected-in-melbourne/9923972


We need to check more than 2 ks. My bees have been flying quite actively from the hive for hours today …and it that was when it was only 6 degrees c. I’m not sure the cool weather is much of a barrier.

edit. It was 11 degrees on Wednesday in Melbourne when they investigated. Plenty warm enough for bees to fly I believe. I wonder if the master reported the dead bees whilst at sea, and if so, why the ship was allowed to dock rather than be checked at sea? The article says that it was investigated “upon docking” at the Port of Melbourne. If anyone knows Melbourne, that is sort of in the heart of a big garden city.


Yes, and considering that the ship entered through the heads of the bay, the entire land from Melbourne out to Sorrento needs to be investigated. I feel our Biosecurity have failed us in allowing the bees to enter the port with the ability to fly. Knowing that bees can fly up 7km from their colony, this should be the radius of inspection and quarantine.


I would like to know the details @Rodderick

If it is the case that the master has notified authorities of dead bees with the ship still at sea and then the ship was allowed to proceed …this can’t be right can it? Surely that can’t have been what happened?

The Spirit of Tasmania ships dock at Port of Melbourne.:worried: I hope they didn’t have any hitchhiking bees coming to Tassie.

and I would like to think that the same master used a can of Mortein to spray the colony well before entering… the devil is in the detail of course… lets hope you right and that some common sense came into play and those bees were dead on arrival… :grimacing:

Yes Rod…the thing is if they were all dead I suppose they wouldn’t be speculating about whether it was warm enough for them to fly off the ship. Bees will definitely fly in 11 degrees celsius.


I’m upset about this and maybe didn’t read as carefully as I usually do, but please tell me - bees from the US were NOT, please, deliberately part of this cargo?? It’s bad enough that no one noticed a beehive when the container was being loaded, but is that what happened?

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It’s only a matter of time before we will lose the fight to keep varroa out. We have to be prepared. Maybe mushrooms will save the day.


Pretty sure it would not have been deliberate Eva, it’s swarming season in the US so the bees are looking for anything suitable to set up home.

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this is the problem- giant container ships offer swarming bees a veritable smorgasbord of potential places to build colonies. I suppose one good thing is that ships from the US and Europe take 6 weeks or more to get here- so I suppose bees have a hard time foraging when they are at sea? It must be very confusing for them when their colony suddenly sets sail… it’s no wonder the Captain reported dead and lethargic bees.

Still it does seem to be just a matter of when not if they will find there way here.

I agree it wouldn’t be deliberate. “thankyou Texas” should be removed from the title of the thread.

I agree, title should include :flushed::tired_face::confused: