Varroa Mite Detection in Newcastle, NSW

This portal has been specifically designed as an information portal to support industry during the response and eradication phase to eliminate Varroa destructor detected in the Port of Newcastle on the 22nd of June 2022.

The QBA Executive team will endeavour to publish updates relating to the incursion as frequently as physically possible. QBA members will continue to receive email updates via our dedicated communication channels.

If you are interested in supporting the QBA by becoming a member, please click here to complete your application for membership. Once you have completed your application and settled your membership invoice, you will be automatically added to our members communication list. 

Whilst we appreciate the anxiety within industry in the wake of the announcement of the detection of varroa, and the added concern it has raised about our future, please know your team at the QBA is on the front line of the response efforts here in Queensland, whilst continuing to provide support to the national effort.  

To report varroa mite detections in Queensland 

Call: Biosecurity Queensland on 13 25 23

or the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline 1800 084 881 

Please click on the logo of the agencies/association below to access latest updates. 

Biosecurity Queensland - Hive Surveillance Portal 

Click here to access the portal

Call for Volunteers

AHBIC are seeking expressions in interest (EOI) from experienced beekeepers interested in offering their time to volunteer and support the response program on the ground in NSW. In order offer your time to the program you must be a full financial member of a member body of AHBIC i.e. a member of the Queensland Beekeepers' Association. 

The QBA is consolidating expressions of interests from Queensland based beekeepers. If you would like to express your interest in supporting the response, please email your full name, email address and mobile contact number to: 

Once the QBA has received your EOI, you will receive a confirmation email including additional details and next steps. 

Social Media Updates
News and Updates

Please use the blog post below to access a time line of all communications relating to the varroa destructor detection and response. 

  • 09 July 2022 7:48 PM | Anonymous

    Please find the latest update from AHBIC attached below. 

    We have also attached the joint media release from Senator Murray Watt Federal Minister for Agriculture and Hon Dugald Saunders NSW Minister for Agriculture, relating to the Varroa mite compensation arrangement for beekeepers. To read the media release, please click the attachment below. 

    We actively encourage our members to recirculate this important message. 

    Kind regards,

    Jo Martin 

    QBA State Secretary

  • 08 July 2022 8:51 PM | Anonymous

    Please find attached below the latest update to the NSW DPI Biosecurity (Varroa Mite) Emergency Order No.10 issued by the Deputy Plant Protection Officer of NSW. 

    As with our previous communications the map is attached at the bottom of this email. To access a copy of the interactive map, please click here to access the map. 

    Kind regards,

    Jo Martin 

    QBA State Secretary

  • 08 July 2022 1:56 PM | Anonymous

    NSW DPI Biosecurity Facebook Update - 8th July 2022 at 12.00pm

    Latest update on DPI’s Varroa mite emergency response:

      A reminder that throughout NSW no beehives or honeybees may be moved without a permit. We also remind the community to report their hives, wild hives or abandoned hives as this response continues.

      Detections at Campvale, Holmesville and Glen Oak all fall within existing emergency zones. These detections bring the total number of infested premises to 34, as at 6pm 7 July.

      NSW DPI has established emergency zones around infested premises and has put significant measures in place to eradicate Varroa mite in NSW. You can read more about the response here:

      A reminder to all beekeepers during this difficult time that there are free and confidential support services available, and we encourage beekeepers to access small business, and mental health and wellbeing support early. You can read more in the latest assistance guide for beekeepers:

    If you're not using social media, please feel free to access the news feeds through the QBA varroa mite portal. Click here to access the portal. 

  • 07 July 2022 7:21 PM | Anonymous

    The following information was taken directly from the NSW DPI Biosecurity Facebook page. We believe our members will appreciate this update from the ground. 

    NSW DPI Biosecurity - Facebook Update - 7th July 2022 at 6.15pm

    We’re still seeing widespread rain across the Hunter region. Despite this, staff from NSW DPI, and volunteers from the NSW RFS and beekeeping industry have been out working on the Varroa mite response.

    Today there are 17 teams in the field, consisting of 95 personnel. Crews were deployed to the Newcastle, Port Stephens and Lake Macquarie local government areas, conducting surveillance operations. Surveillance teams are expected to exceed 30 by the weekend for varroa mite.

    DPI extends its thanks to beekeeping industry volunteers, as well as RFS volunteers and staff that are assisting in the ongoing response to varroa mite.

    Beekeepers are encouraged to continue surveillance and report results via the DPI website:

    We have listed the NSW DPI Biosecurity Facebook page to our varroa mite portal for those members not on social media. Click here to access the QBA varroa mite portal. 

    Kind regards,

    Jo Martin 

    QBA State Secretary

  • 07 July 2022 7:13 PM | Anonymous

    Please find the updated Biosecurity (Varroa Mite) Emergency Order No.9 issued by the Deputy Chief Plant Protection Officer of NSW. 

    The new order reflects the extension of areas identified as Varroa Mite Emergency Zones. 

    Please click the link below to access a copy of the new order. 

    I have also taken the liberty of attaching a copy of the new map to the bottom of this email. Should you wish to access the interactive map, please visit the link below.

    We strongly recommend members continue to access the QBA website varroa mite portal for additional information. This portal continues to be updated daily. Click here to access the varroa mite portal. 

    As with all communications relating to the response, we will continue to publish updates in a time sensitive manner. 

    Kind regards,

    Jo Martin 

    QBA State Secretary

  • 06 July 2022 9:34 PM | Anonymous

    The basis of tonight's email is to provide an update to our members who are seeking additional information on some of the requirements now in place for the migration of hives to the almond growing regions in Victoria. 

    The following information has been taken directly from the Agriculture Victoria website (DAF equivalent in Victoria). 

    Victorian Control Area

    An Order declaring Victoria as a Control Area is now in place prohibiting the movement of bees, beehives, beekeeping equipment and bee products into and within Victoria.

    Anyone seeking to move bees, hives, used beekeeping equipment and bee products, including pollen and honeycomb into Victoria, from New South Wales, or that which have been in NSW at any time after 1 January 2022 and have since moved to another State or Territory, must obtain a permit. Movement restrictions will also apply to any other State or Territory if Varroa mite is declared present.

    This does not include processed honey and wax and new beekeeping tools and equipment which can be transported within Victoria and from interstate.

    In addition, anyone seeking to move bees, beehives, beekeeping equipment and bee products into Victoria’s Sunraysia region, from within Victoria or from another state, must obtain a permit. This measure has been put in place ahead of Victoria’s almond pollination season. This applies to all Victorian and interstate beekeepers.

    No permits will be granted for applications seeking movement from NSW while the standstill is in place, in line with NSW emergency orders. This also applies to Victorian beekeepers seeking re-entry to Victoria.

    Applications from New South Wales will be assessed once the current standstill in NSW has lifted.

    This Order has been made to prevent the exotic Varroa mite from coming into Victoria from NSW. Currently Victoria remains free from Varroa mite.

    To learn more about the requirements and relevant permits to enter Victoria please visit:

    Please also note, given the current standstill (Movement Control Order) in NSW, movement from other states into NSW is strictly prohibited.

    Information and updates on when the standstill in NSW may be lifted will be communicated to our members and contacts as a priority. 

    As a final update, similar to our efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic, a national task force has again been mobilised to manage the immediate challenges of industry to coordinate and control the movement of hives for pollination events across the country. 

    The QBA Management team have asked that I continue to represent the QBA and greater QLD  industry given my past involvement and expertise in the exercise to see bees delivered to pollination during the uncertainty of COVID. The QBA is supported in the meeting by Biosecurity Queensland and an expert from Transport and Main Roads who provided assistance during the COVID-19 border closures. 

    The task force includes representation at a high level from AHBIC, state bodies, and state agencies and a broker, all working together towards a common goal. The group has held 3 meetings over the past 12 days with much progress being made as a result of each meeting. We hope to be in a position in the near future to provide some clarity to Queensland based apiarists who provide pollination services to our dependent industry partners. 

    On behalf of the QBA Management team I would like to express our sincere appreciation for the continued support we've received through the significant volume of calls and emails. 

    Thank you for your support as we too increase commitment towards the national effort to contain and eradicate varroa. 

    Kind regards,

    Jo Martin 

    QBA State Secretary

  • 05 July 2022 8:45 PM | Anonymous

    Please find the updated Biosecurity (Varroa Mite) Emergency Order No.8 issued by the Deputy Chief Plant Protection Officer of NSW. 

    The following information was taken from the NSW DPI Varroa Mite response page at 8.30pm this evening (05/07/2022). 

    Infested premises update

    Tracing efforts have detected five new infested premises at Anna Bay, Heatherbrae, Williamtown, Mayfield and Lambton. These new detections all fall within existing emergency zones, bringing the total number of infested premises to 24.

    Report your hives

    Beekeepers and property owners with hives on their land within 50km emergency zones are asked to report their hives on the Beekeeper Notification – Varroa mite online form.

    Please where possible, continue to communicate this information to the greater industry.

    Kind regards,

    Jo Martin 

    QBA State Secretary

  • 05 July 2022 2:35 PM | Anonymous

    Please find the Varroa Mite Update No.6 attached within this email. The update relates to the identification of a new infested premises near Narrabri NSW. 

    We will continue to share updates with industry. Please ensure you've explored our dedicated varroa mite portal that can be found by clicking on the link below.

    The portal is updated within minutes of email updates being sent to members and is a useful source of information to reflect the timeline of communications to industry. 

    Kind regards,

    Jo Martin 

    QBA State Secretary

  • 04 July 2022 6:57 PM | Anonymous

    Please see today's final update from the NSW DPI Biosecurity team. 

    New infested premises linked to known cases

    New Varroa mite detections have been confirmed in Narrabri, Ferodale and Lambton.

    These cases are epidemiologically linked to previously known cases in the Newcastle area.

    This brings the number of emergency zones to a total of 19 infested premises. Close epidemiological links in all cases so far means  and the Apiary industry have a good opportunity to eradicate this biosecurity threat and stop the onset of the Varroa mite.

    Please also find a copy of the new Biosecurity (Varroa Mite) Emergency Order No.7 issued by the Deputy Chief Plant Protection Officer of NSW. 

    I have again taken the liberty of attaching the new and updated map to the bottom of this email. 

    Kind regards,

    Jo Martin 

    QBA State Secretary

  • 03 July 2022 9:30 PM | Anonymous

    Varroa mite emergency order extended to include Port Stephens

    3 Jul 2022

    The properties at Tanilba Bay, Salt Ash and another at Mayfield East are part of 16 premises now confirmed to have varroa mite infiltrating their hives.

    “Further reporting by beekeepers and investigations by NSW DPI officers, has identified three varroa mite infestations at these properties,” Dr Anderson said.

    “This means that the emergency order has been updated to include the Port Stephens Peninsula within the red 10km eradication zone, where hives will be euthanised.

    “NSW DPI Biosecurity experts continue to act to protect the NSW Bee Industry in conjunction with the apiary industry, Local Land Services, NSW Police, Rural Fire Service and the wider community as part of the mammoth effort to arrest the spread of the threat.”

    Mr Anderson said the NSW DPI continues to ask all people who have acquired honeybees (including queen bees, nucleus hives and hives with honeybees) from within the 50km emergency notification zone of the Port of Newcastle in the last 12-months to report them to help ensure business continuity for the honeybee industry.

    “Community reporting will importantly help us facilitate and free up the movement of honeybees in the rest of NSW, especially around almond pollination,” Dr Anderson said.

    “The varroa mite response plan has also been updated so that while it remains necessary to euthanise honeybee colonies in the eradication zones and destroy internal hive equipment such as brood and honey frames, other equipment will only be destroyed when a risk assessment deems it necessary, with options to decontaminate external equipment such as hive boxes, pallets and straps as well as metal ware, so they can be retained by beekeepers.

    “Beekeepers are reminded of the group permit that allows flood-affected honeybees and hives in current flood watch areas to be moved to a higher location on premises, or if that’s not possible, within the same emergency zone.

    “After the hives have been moved as per this Permit, they cannot be moved back to the original location. Notification of any change in location must be notified by the Beekeeper Notification – Varroa mite online form at,” Dr Anderson said.

    Further Information:

    Throughout the remainder of NSW, no beehives or honeybees may be moved.

    More information is available from NSW DPI:

    Notification of any change in location must be notified by the Beekeeper Notification – Varroa mite online form at

    Online form: Report honeybee acquisition

    Current flood warnings that may impact on the emergency zones can be sourced at

    If you are not in a flood watch affected area you must not move honeybees or hives; significant penalties may apply under the Biosecurity Act 2015 if you do.

    Exotic Plant Pest Hotline on 1800 084 881 (9am to 5pm, 7 days a week).

    Continue to check FAQs

    Media contact: 02 6391 3686

Useful Resources

Educational Information for all Beekeepers

Use the BeeAware website for educational information on varroa.

Use the Professional Beekeepers website for articles on varroa.

Varroa mite educational videos

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