SHB's mark hive for further attack(!)
I just read a fascinating article at
entitled "Multitrophic interaction facilitates parasite–host relationship between an invasive beetle and the honey bee".
I found this link on another post on this site yesterday, but cant find that post (apologies to whoever it was).
In a nutshell, the researchers found that the SHB localizes honey bee alarm pheromone and uses the scent to find and invade the hive. They are able to detect the scent at a much lower concentration than the bees. The SHB carry a yeast in their intestinal tract that inoculates the hive pollen stores, causing fermentation products that include alarm pheromone. The increased alarm pheromone and closely related volitile chemicals produced functionally mark the hive for further invasion by additional SHB!
Wow, like putting a homing beacon on the hive for all the SHB's in the area!
Seems to make a real case for having hive entrance SHB traps. One such product is the Beetlejail SHB entrance trap (I have no relationship with these guys, but the videos are interesting).
Looks like a target for selective breeding, since the AHB tolerates this pest via aggressive hive hygene in its native range in Sub-Sahara Africa.