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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Jürgen Kueppers told me that 1982 in an article of the Swiss beekeeping magazine called "Bienenvater" Brother Adam has said something like:

" If you start treating varroa mites, you will have difficulties to stop."

Varroa came to Germany 1979?


Anyone who can send me a pdf -copy of that interview or know what number it is in?
 

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As far as I know, varroa came to Germany in 1977 first time (publicly...).

It is known, that German bee researches accidentally brought varroa together with Apis cerana to Germany in 1973 to make breeding experiments with cerana bees. It is said, that this triggered the varroa infestation in Germany. But that is just talk.

The varroa mite jumped to the European bee first time in 1960 in South China. In 1964 it came across the Chinese-Russian border and wiped out hives all the way up to Europe.

Concerning Brother Adam and the Schweizer Bienenvater: There is only one report:

(1962) Einige Erfahrungen mit der Milbenseuche. Bienenvater, 83, 35-38, 79-81. Bruder Adam.

I think, in 1962 he did not talk about the varroa mites, but the tracheal mites.

He did talk about it in the American Bee Journal. See: http://perso.fundp.ac.be/~jvandyck/homage/artcl/FAABJ91en.html
 

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Brother Adam has said something like:
" If you start treating varroa mites, you will have difficulties to stop."
Nice to read what Brother Adam actually said:
Varroa jacobsoni has not as yet invaded the British Isles (1991). However, where this parasite is found, beekeepers have no option, but must treat every colony without fail, regularly and at the appropriate time - irrespective of the numerous uncertainties and drawbacks.
Many thanks Bernhard ... (hope all is well with you ?)
LJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
A
Concerning Brother Adam and the Schweizer Bienenvater: There is only one report:

(1962) Einige Erfahrungen mit der Milbenseuche. Bienenvater, 83, 35-38, 79-81. Bruder Adam.

I think, in 1962 he did not talk about the varroa mites, but the tracheal mites.
Ok, thanks. Seems that I got wrong information, or maybe I should blame my hearing problem. I have the devices, for both ears, but don´t use them too much...
 

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"The Long-term Objective
"On the basis of the findings and experience gained in breeding the honey bee since 1916; also the knowledge acquired to the genetic possibilities at hand, I feel confident that in the course of time a honey bee fully and effectively resistant to the Varroa mite can be developed. It will do away with a host of uncertainties, as well as the endless extra labor and expense, including the incidental brood diseases for which this parasite is seemingly responsible. This is indeed a challenge that modern progressive beekeeping cannot circumvent. However, both the tracheal mite and Varroa jacobsoni will in all probability never be totally eliminated. However, if we can reduce their incidence to a point when their presence has no bearing on the honey-gathering potentiality of a colony, our practical objective will have been attained."--Brother Adam.
http://perso.fundp.ac.be/~jvandyck/homage/artcl/FAABJ91en.html
 

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The varroa mite jumped to the European bee first time in 1960 in South China. In 1964 it came across the Chinese-Russian border and wiped out hives all the way up to Europe.
A. Cerana always existed in the Primorie Region of Russia proper (for as long as the Russians first settled there somewhere in 1700's, give or take AND described the local bee they found - they called it "Chinese wax bee").
So, it only makes sense the mites were there way, way prior to the 1964.

And indeed - the mites were first documented in A. cerana nest in 1942 in the area (for sure, they were present in the area before they were documented):
Впервые в Приморском крае клещи были обнаружены в гнезде восковой пчелы Apis cerana cerana Fabr. в 1942 году [2].
Source:
Маркова Т.О.1, Репш Н.В.1, Маслов М.В.2, Егоренчев С.Е.1
Дальневосточный федеральный университет. Школа педагогики, г. Уссурийск
2016

PS: one implication - only when beekeeping in the Primorie Region of Russia became large-scale, concentrated, and industrial (just about pre-WWII and their after) - the mite issue pronounced itself;
until then the locals kept the A. mellifera in the old ways (traditional logs hive/little swarm control/decentralized small yards/etc) for at least 100 years, and the mite issue was never pronounced enough to care about (hence, no one looked at the issue at all - did not matter, no one complained, and no research was justified, ordered, and financed);

I have no data to support this, but it seems reasonable to assume that the mites were transferred to A. melifera long before anyone cared to look for them.
The issue was just mitigated by the bees themselves.
Indeed, the feral bees of Bashkortostan quickly crashed in 1970s, but just as quickly rebounded within few short years to about the same population levels.
 

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The first varroa was described in 1902. But varroa is not varroa, as we all know now. I reckon if they'd stuck to their own local bees and their old way of keeping bees, the varroa destructor wouldn't have jumped that easy.

We would talk about tracheal mites instead today. :D
 
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