In June 2022, varroa mite (Varroa destructor) was detected in sentinel hives in NSW. Since, it has spread to other areas within NSW. Efforts were undertaken to eradicate varroa mite from Australia, but in September 2023 it was recognised eradication was no longer practically feasible. The response would now focus on transition to management (T2M) activities.

‘The aim of the transition to management program is to increase resilience and capacity to manage varroa mite within the Australian honey bee industry and thereby minimise the ongoing impacts of varroa mite naturalisation on the bee industry and pollination reliant industries’ ( 2024)

On April 30, a webinar was organised by the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council (AHBIC) to provide an update on the National Transition to Management Program. Take home messages from this webinar include:

  • Varroa mite (Varroa destructor) is now considered established
  • As of April 30, the established Biosecurity Zones in NSW are lifted
  • The pest remains notifiable in NSW to enable tracking of its slow spread to other areas to support the trade of live bees
  • A range of chemical management is available in NSW, with some options being under emergency permit or pending APVMA approval
  • Varroa Mite T2M Workshops are currently being rolled out for both commercial and recreational beekeepers nationally

For Australian beekeepers, the Varroa Mite incursion is the first-time requiring management of pests and diseases in their hives. Effective pest and disease management practices are crucial for hive protection. It’s important to understand how to implement these changes.

For the latest honey bee industry news, visit the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council at

Information on the current T2M program can be found at

A recording of the National Transition to Management Webinar held on April 30 2024 can be found at



References (2024) Varroa mite (Varroa destructor), Australian Government, accessed 6 May 2024