Statistical review and re-design of the National Bee Pest Surveillance Program (MT14057)
What was it all about?
The National Bee Pest Surveillance Program provides a targeted national surveillance system for the early detection of exotic pest threats to honey bees, such as Varroa mite. The program includes a range of detection activities at key ports all around Australia including monitoring sentinel hives for exotic pests and sweep netting for foraging bees that might have arrived on ships. Safeguarding the health of bees protects Australia’s honey bee industry, as well as producers of pollination-reliant crops.
This project reviewed the effectiveness of the National Bee Pest Surveillance Program, then run under MT12011, to identify opportunities for improvement in the activities carried out. It is imperative that any incursion of exotic pests of bees is detected early to prevent spread and establishment in Australian honey bees.
The team proposed and costed a re-design of the program for the future, including enhanced surveillance activities, checks for Asian honey bees, Asian hornets and exotic viruses that are considered high-priority biosecurity threats, broadened use of sentinel hives across Australian ports and more. These recommendations were implemented in a subsequent investment to support the program.
Find out more about the ongoing National Bee Pest Surveillance Program on the Plant Health Australia website.