Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

PVC nest boxes are less at risk of occupancy by feral honey bees than timber nest boxes and natural hollows.

Abstract

Feral European Honey Bee (Apis mellifera) has been identified as a potential nest competitor for Australian hollow nesting species, but few studies have investigated the impact of feral honey bee competition on Threatened species. Our study used data from Glossy Black-cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus lathami halmaturinus) nests on Kangaroo Island, monitored and managed over an 11-year period, and found 12% of nests became occupied by feral honey bees during that period. Our results indicate that feral honey bees were less likely to occupy nest boxes made of PVC (5%) compared with wooden nest boxes (24%) or natural hollows in Eucalyptus trees (14%). The removal of feral honey bee hives from nests is a priority for long-term conservation of glossy black-cockatoos on Kangaroo Island. We recommend that PVC nest boxes are chosen for future nesting habitat restoration, due to the more frequent use of wooden nest boxes by feral honey bees.