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Research Project: Chemical Communications of Plants, Insects, Microbes, and Nematodes

Location: Chemistry Research

Title: A Novel Method in Small Hive Beetle Rearing

Author
item Stuhl, Charles

Submitted to: Journal of Apiculture Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/21/2022
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: The small hive beetle is a major pest of the western honey bee, Apis mellifera, and is becoming major honey bee pest around the world. To investigate better control methods and their effects on the honey bee, behavioral experiments require a reliable supply of healthy beetles. Scientists at the Center for Medical, Agricultural, and Veterinary Entomology, Chemistry Research Unit in Gainesville, FL have developed an effective rearing method for the small hive beetle using commercially available diet ingredients and equipment that can easily be constructed from local sources. This method allows for thousands of healthy beetles to be reared weekly in a controlled and confined space. The rapid spread of this pest is inevitable; however, new eradication and control measures are urgently needed to slow the global spread of this beetle. The development of this efficient rearing method is essential for the advancement in research studies and the development of management protocols for small hive beetle.

Technical Abstract: Research to investigate small hive beetle, Aethina tumida, and its effects on the honey bee require a consistent supply of healthy beetles. This protocol describes an effective rearing method for the small hive beetle using commercially available pollen patties and equipment that can easily be constructed from local sources. In this protocol, a method is described that allows for many thousands of healthy beetles to be reared weekly in a confined space. This knowledge is a crucial step for the advancement in research studies and the development of management protocols for small hive beetle.