I'm pretty sure they can detach and move on to the next bee or go mate and lay eggs.
They can live as long as the bee does right through winter otherwise they would be extinct up here.I asked a similar question here last winter about how long mites might live off of a bee and I believe I was told that 15 days was the max.
The Varroa mite is a highly specific brood parasite that relies completely on its host’s biology for its own survival and propagation by feeding on bee hemolymph and by reproducing in brood cells. [HIGHLIGHT] A bee independent life stage does not exist. [/HIGHLIGHT]
Is it typical that a mite would be off a bee for fifteen days or is it typical that the mite would jump on another host?>
Varroa will starve to death without a bee long before winter is over.
Ah, that is pretty easy, just keep the live ones.It is the viruses the mites pass to the bees that actually kill the colony. Some bees adapt to the viruses, some don't. It is up to the beekeeper to observe and select resistant bees.