Varroa jacobsoni (Varroa mite)
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PicturesTop of page
IdentityTop of page
Preferred Scientific Name
- Varroa jacobsoni
Preferred Common Name
- Varroa mite
- VARRJA (Varroa jacobsoni)
Summary of InvasivenessTop of page
Varroa jacobsoni is a natural ectoparasitic mite of the Eastern honeybee, Apis cerana. However, after having recently jumped from its natural host into the European honeybee Apis mellifera, it has emerged as a potential serious pest, causing bee colony losses. Together with its original host, V. jacobsoni has been introduced to New Guinea and Solomon Islands. Although Australia used to be considered one of the last remaining places in the world free of Varroa mites, in 2016 a population of A. cerana was found infected with V. jacobsoni in Townsville, North Queensland. This population has been eradicated, although the follow-up phase of the eradication program is still ongoing.
Taxonomic TreeTop of page
- Domain: Eukaryota
- Kingdom: Metazoa
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Subphylum: Chelicerata
- Class: Arachnida
- Subclass: Acari
- Order: Parasitiformes
- Suborder: Mesostigmata
- Family: Varroidae
- Genus: Varroa
- Species: Varroa jacobsoni
Notes on Taxonomy and NomenclatureTop of page
In 2000, V. jacobsoni was found to be a species complex consisting of two separate species, V. jacobsoni and V. destructor (Anderson and Trueman, 2000). Both species parasitize the Eastern honey bee, Apis cerana, but it was thought that only V. destructor was capable of parasitizing the European honey bee, A. mellifera. Although V. destructor is indeed the species responsible for the devastating worldwide infections of A. mellifera, it was discovered that V. jacobsoni can also parasitize A. mellifera (Roberts et al., 2013; 2015).
It is important to note that the literature on Varroa infections of A. mellifera published before 2000 erroneously refers to V. jacobsoni, instead of V. destructor.
Distribution TableTop of page
The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.
|Continent/Country/Region||Distribution||Last Reported||Origin||First Reported||Invasive||Reference||Notes|
|Indonesia||Present||Present based on regional distribution.|
|-Irian Jaya||Present||Introduced||1977||Anderson, 1994; Roberts et al., 2015|
|-Java||Present||Anderson, 1994; Roberts et al., 2015|
|Korea, Republic of||Present|
|Sri Lanka||Present||CAB Abstracts|
|Australia||Eradicated||Based on regional distribution|
|-Queensland||Eradicated||2017||Introduced||2016||Biosecurity Queensland, 2016|
|Papua New Guinea||Widespread||Introduced||1980s||Anderson, 1994; Roberts et al., 2015|
|Solomon Islands||Present||Introduced||2003||Roberts et al., 2013; Roberts et al., 2015|
Host AnimalsTop of page
Impact SummaryTop of page
ReferencesTop of page
Biosecurity Queensland, 2016. Prevention and control program for Varroa mite (Varroa jacobsoni) under the Biosecurity Act 2014. Queensland, Australia: Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Queensland Government.
Roberts J, Anderson D, Tay WT, 2013. Varroa jacobsoni: a new pest of European honey bees. Project summary of PRJ- 003338, Pub. No. 14/005. Wagga, Australia: Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation. http://www.agrifutures.com.au/wp-content/uploads/publications/14-005.pdf
Roberts, J. M. K., Anderson, D. L., Tay, W. T., 2015. Multiple host shifts by the emerging honeybee parasite, Varroa jacobsoni., Molecular Ecology, 24(10):2379-2391 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/(ISSN)1365-294X
Distribution MapsTop of page
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