Honey Bee Threats Pt 2

Honey Bee Threats Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
With today’s Fruit Grower Report, I’m Bob Larson. Washington State University is out to give a big boost to its capacity for Honey Bee & Pollinator Research, Extension and Education at a new facility in Othello.

Department of Entomology Chair Laura Lavine says pests will be a big part of their research on things like the Vorroa Mite, but also a new threat, the Giant Asian Hornet which is knocking at our door …

LAVINE … “A single Giant Asian Hornet is two inches long. These things are enormous. They are in Canada, in B.C., and they’ve made their way down to Blaine, Washington. And so, we’ve got alerts out to look for them.”

The hornets, Lavine says aren’t to be taken lightly …

LAVINE … “They are nesting bees, hornets, and their venom is extremely dangerous to people although they’re relative loathe to sting, and they can sting multiple times.”

Lavine says the hornets pose a big threat to honey bees …

LAVINE … “What they do is they find a bee hive or a bee colony, and they just rip the heads off all the bees and then they go in and they eat the brood.”

But, Lavine says the hornet is just the latest threat to honey bees …

LAVINE … “Beekeepers are really panicked about the Giant Asian Hornet because they already have concerns about pesticides and they’re concerned about habitat loss. They’re concerned about bacterial pathogens, fungal pathogens, Varroa Mites, viruses. They just have a lot of things that they have to worry about.

The program is now fundraising to allow for new projects which scientists feel their research track record supports.

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