Commercial Sources of Mite Resistant VSH Queen Bees in Hawaii
Good hygiene is one of the honeybee's greatest attributes. Those bees who clean out diseased material quickly from the hive, suffer less damage and are more productive.
VSH stands for Varroa Sensitive Hygiene, a genetic trait in which the bees are especially aggressive against the Varroa mite which has been decimating bees worldwide. VSH bees are able to detect the mites while they are hidden behind sealed brood cells. They then uncap and remove the infected brood along with the mites. This behavior is very effective at keeping the varroa mite population down without the need for chemical treatments. These bees are also resistant to two other serious diseases, American foulbrood and chalkbrood.
Some of the largest and most successful pollinators and honey producers now prefer using VSH queens in their operations. They are getting good yields of honey and excellent pollination of almonds, apples, blueberries, and many other crops using VSH bees.
VSH queen bees are now being produced by commercial queen producers on the Big Island of Hawaii. These bees have been developed in cooperation with the USDA Bee Breeding Lab in Baton Rouge, LA. Years of research carefully studying how we can help the bees help themselves has finally paid off. Today all beekeepers can take advantage of this breakthrough simply by introducing VSH queens into their hives.