Document Detail

Effects of invasive parasites on bumble bee declines.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  21771075     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Bumble bees are a group of pollinators that are both ecologically and economically important and declining worldwide. Numerous mechanisms could be behind this decline, and the spread of parasites from commercial colonies into wild populations has been implicated recently in North America. Commercial breeding may lead to declines because commercial colonies may have high parasite loads, which can lead to colonization of native bumble bee populations; commercial rearing may allow higher parasite virulence to evolve; and global movement of commercial colonies may disrupt spatial patterns in local adaptation between hosts and parasites. We assessed parasite virulence, transmission mode, and infectivity. Microparasites and so-called honey bee viruses may pose the greatest threat to native bumble bee populations because certain risk factors are present; for example, the probability of horizontal transmission of the trypanosome parasite Crithidia bombi is high. The microsporidian parasite Nosema bombi may play a role in declines of bumble bees in the United States. Preliminary indications that C. bombi and the neogregarine Apicystis bombi may not be native in parts of South America. We suggest that the development of molecular screening protocols, thorough sanitation efforts, and cooperation among nongovernmental organizations, governments, and commercial breeders might immediately mitigate these threats.
Ivan Meeus; Mark J F Brown; Dirk C De Graaf; Guy Smagghe
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology     Volume:  25     ISSN:  1523-1739     ISO Abbreviation:  Conserv. Biol.     Publication Date:  2011 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2011-07-20     Completed Date:  2011-11-15     Revised Date:  2014-07-22    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9882301     Medline TA:  Conserv Biol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  662-71     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
© 2011 Society for Conservation Biology.
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MeSH Terms
Bees / parasitology*
Population Dynamics
Grant Support
BB/I000151/1//Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council; BB/I000151/1//Wellcome Trust; //Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council

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