Varroosis of honey bees,
Information received on 01/07/2016 from Dr Mark Schipp, Chief Veterinary Officer, Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, Australian Government, Canberra, Australia
Report type Immediate notification
Date of start of the event 27/06/2016
Date of confirmation of the event 30/06/2016
Report date 01/07/2016
Date submitted to OIE 01/07/2016
Reason for notification First occurrence of a listed disease
Manifestation of disease Sub-clinical infection
Causal agent Varroa jacobsoni
Nature of diagnosis Laboratory (basic)
This event pertains to a defined zone within the country
Related reports Immediate notification (01/07/2016)
Follow-up report No. 1 (08/07/2016)
Follow-up report No. 2 (20/07/2016)
Follow-up report No. 3 (28/07/2016)
Follow-up report No. 4 (10/08/2016)
Follow-up report No. 5 (18/08/2016)
Follow-up report No. 6 (07/10/2016)
Follow-up report No. 7 (04/11/2016)
Follow-up report No. 8 (04/07/2017)
Follow-up report No. 9 (27/06/2019)
Follow-up report No. 10 (11/07/2019)
Follow-up report No. 11 (06/08/2019)
New outbreaks (1)
Outbreak 1 Townsville, QLD, Queensland
Date of start of the outbreak 27/06/2016
Outbreak status Resolved (18/07/2016)
Epidemiological unit Apiary
Affected animals
Species Susceptible Cases Deaths Killed and disposed of Slaughtered
Bees (hives) 1 0 1 0
Affected population Asian honey bee (Apis cerana) nest located at the Port of Townsville as part of routine surveillance and national control program. Whole nest destroyed, dead bees and comb collected and submitted for testing.
Summary of outbreaks Total outbreaks: 1
Total animals affected
Species Susceptible Cases Deaths Killed and disposed of Slaughtered
Bees (hives) 1 0 1 0
Outbreak statistics
Species Apparent morbidity rate Apparent mortality rate Apparent case fatality rate Proportion susceptible animals lost*
Bees (hives) ** ** 0.00% **
*Removed from the susceptible population through death, destruction and/or slaughter
**Not calculated because of missing information
Source of the outbreak(s) or origin of infection
  • Unknown or inconclusive
Epidemiological comments Asian honey bee (Apis cerana) hive detected in the Port of Townsville, destroyed on 27 June 2016. Dead bees and comb submitted for testing on the same day to the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, Operational Science Program, in Brisbane. Varroa species was detected. Varroa jacobsoni was confirmed morphologically by CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation), Black Mountain, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, on 30 June 2016. Molecular analysis is currently being undertaken. Genetic studies of the hive will be carried out to determine the possible origin of the bees. Further surveillance work, since 27 June, has not resulted in further detections of Asian honey bee (Apis cerana). Along with surveillance, communication and awareness activities within the community and industry are being undertaken.
Control measures
Measures applied
  • Surveillance within containment and/or protection zone
  • Stamping out
  • Vaccination permitted (if a vaccine exists)
  • No treatment of affected animals
Measures to be applied
  • Quarantine
Diagnostic test results
Laboratory name and type Species Test Test date Result
CSIRO, Black Mountain, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory (National laboratory) Bees microscopic examination 30/06/2016 Positive
Department of Agriculture and Water Resource, Operational Science Program, Brisbane, Queensland (National laboratory) Bees microscopic examination 27/06/2016 Positive
Future Reporting
The event is continuing. Weekly follow-up reports will be submitted.
Map of outbreak locations