Occurrence of the small hive beetle (Aethina tumida) in Melipona rufiventris colonies in Brazil

Sérgio Nogueira Pereira, Luis Henrique Soares Alves, Renata Falcão Rabello da Costa, Fábio Prezoto, Erica Weinstein Teixeira


Several traits make stingless bees attractive to parasites of honey bee colonies. The small hive beetle (SHB) Aethina tumida, a honey bee colony scavenger/parasite native to sub-Saharan Africa, where is considered only a minor pest, is now present on almost all continents, including the Latin America region in South America. SHB has been recorded in Brazil since 2016 in Africanized honey bees and generaly the beetle does not seem cause negative impacts. European honey bees, on the other hand, suffer considerable damage when parasitized by SHB, suggesting a potential threat to other susceptible social bees. The present study reports the first occurrence of SHB in stingless bees in Brazil, and is an alert to authorities and stingless beekeepers to prevent infestations.


Nitidulidae; Meliponini; invasive pest; pollinator

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13102/sociobiology.v68i1.6021


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