Study discovers bee death mite

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SCIENTISTS at the University of Sheffield have discovered a bug that may be the reason behind the death of millions of honey bee colonies.

The researchers have discovered a parasitic mite which has caused the deformed wing virus to spread between honey bees.

The research conducted in Hawaii by researchers from the university and other scientists showed how the Varroa mite caused the virus to increase its frequency among honey bee colonies from 10 per cent to 100 per cent.

Dr Stephen Martin, of the University of Sheffield’s Department of Animal and Plant Sciences said: “Just 2,000 mites can cause a colony containing 30,000 bees to die. The mite is the biggest problem worldwide for bee keepers.”