Small hive beetle

aethina tumida adult

The small hive beetle Aethina tumida is a parasite of honey bees originating in (Sub-Saharan) Africa. This parasite has become highly invasive, and has multiplied in various countries since 1996. It has managed to establish itself in the USA and Australia, where it has caused substantial damage in honey-bee colonies. Although its initial incursion into Europe was prevented in 2004, it was discovered in southern Italy in 2014. Measures have been taken to prevent its spread, with the importing of bees from infected regions now being prohibited in the EU and Switzerland. A monitoring programme, Apinella, has been set up in Switzerland to detect the beetle's possible presence as quickly as possible, thereby increasing the changes of its eradication.