Varroa destructor, a species of parasitic mite that attacks European honey bees, has recently been detected at the Port of Newcastle in NSW.
Varroa mites are considered to be the greatest current threat to Australia’s honey and honey bee pollination plant industries. While there have been no detections in the ACT, the ACT Government is taking necessary action to control the outbreak and minimise the risk to the Territory.
To protect the bee community in Canberra and the surrounds, the movement of honey bees and used honey bee hives and equipment into the ACT will be restricted. These restrictions apply to any bees and beehives that have been in NSW at any time within the last six months, including bees and hives which have moved to other jurisdictions in this time. These measures align with other states and territories.
Restrictions will remain in place as long as is deemed necessary, until the outbreak is controlled and is no longer considered to be a threat. New hives, or hives that have never been exposed to or had contact with bees, will not be affected by these new restrictions.
The ACT Government is collaborating with our colleagues at the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment as well as other states and territories on national response arrangements.
To read about the new restrictions visit the ACT Legislation Register