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The following article appeared in the Brisbane Courier Mail today

http://www.news.com.au/couriermail/story/0,23739,26563774-3102,00.html

It is amazing to know that the colonies have been found so far from the coast and to realise that they would have had to leapfrog their way up the mountains through virgin bush to get there.

Of course the article does not imply that varroa is present in the colonies but that the threat is obvious. Knowing just how far wide and isolated the open spaces are in the far north makes things quite unsettling as the asian honey bee and attached varroa could be anywhere in thousands of square kilometres and no one would know. Containing an outbreak would seem to be impossible.

It seems to be only a matter of time before the first evidence of varroa is discovered up that way

****
 

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Hi ****-

You are right, it's not a matter of if you get varroa, but when. And when Australia does get Varroa, you can more than likely thank international trade. Obviously these diseases and parasites can't swim. International trade is how we inherited tracheal mites, varroa mites, Nosema and every other miserable thing plagueing our bees.

The big question is what are the Aussies doing to breed bees that are resistant to the inevitable?
 

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I thought that varroa is already in Australia?

I distinctly remember reading about it last year. They apparently found somewhere numerous colonies of Asian bee, cerana, I believe?
Cerana most closely resembles our bees.
The way one can tel the difference is that when our bee, mellifera, is fanning at the entrance, with head toward the hive.
Cerana does its fanning with head away from the hive...
They were even discussing the inadequate measures to gather those colonies and destroy them.
Apparently those colonies were tested and were infested with varoa?

This discussion was going on at the time when they were set to pollinate the almonds and had to do with importation of Aussie bees and inadequate control over this by the US - or something of that nature???

Perhaps someone with better memory can chime in and correct me where I have erred?
 

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> I thought that varroa is already in Australia?
>
> I distinctly remember reading about it last year.
> They apparently found somewhere numerous colonies
> of Asian bee, cerana, I believe?

They found colonies but supposedly there were no varroa on them.

Extermination is the normal procedure. Check online for the documentary "Honeybee Blues" which shows colony hunters at work.

It's only a matter of time until a swarm with varroa winds up near a beekeeper's colonies though.
 

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The Cerana bee, could be a bigger problem than Varroa.
With competition for forage, & other things.
 
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