Varroa Gate

The Bee Institute and Bayer have created the varroa gate, a structure at the entrance to the hive. Every bee must climb through this gate when leaving or returning to its own hive. At first sight it doesn’t look anything special: just a plastic strip with holes through which the bees fly in and out.

A new way of protecting bees against varroa mites

Inspired by tick collars worn by dogs and cats

Only a closer look shows the immense benefits of this innovation. The plastic strip is coated in chemicals. Whenever a bee passes through the gate, it touches the edge. This transfers a mite poison (acaricide) to the bee and kills any mites it may be carrying. The substance needs to be permanently available on the surface of the strip so that protection can last for several weeks. The Varroa Gate should be on the market in selected countries by 2017. (Text: Bayer Beecare)

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