Modelling biocontrol of Varroa destructor using a benign haplotype as a competitive antagonist

The two haplotypes of Varroa destructor that have been identified as parasites of the Western honeybee (Apis mellifera L.) show disparate levels of virulence towards honeybee colonies. The Korea haplotype has been associated with severe colony mortality, whereas untreated colonies of European A. mellifera have survived long-term infestation by the Japan haplotype. The possible existence of a benign haplotype of V. destructor raises the prospect that it be used to “inoculate” colonies to provide biocontrol of the virulent haplotype.

Towards greener pastures—Pathogens and pasture pests

Two of New Zealand's most important insect pests, grass grub and porina, are endemic species which have successfully colonised improved pastures. Population densities of these insects within this new environment are far greater than in the native plant systems in which they evolved. Within these high populations diseases have flourished, and high numbers of diseases are recorded from each of these pests. These include bacteria, fungi, nematodes, viruses and protozoa.