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Ants carry DWV


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From the Herald, it seems Argentine Ants carry deformed wing virus.

 

 

An invasive species of ants has been discovered to carry two viruses, one of which has been linked to the death of honey bees.

 

Argentine ants, listed in the top 100 of the world's worst invasive species, are found on every continent and in most regions of New Zealand and cause problems for crops and urban households.

 

Now, Kiwi scientists have identified something else troublesome about the ants - they could be tiny reservoirs for a pathogen associated with the colony collapse of honey bees.

 

Victoria University ecologist Professor Phil Lester, who led the team which made the findings, said the discovery that Argentine ants carry deformed wing virus (DFW) - typically linked with the destructive varroa mite - made the species more of a nuisance than previously thought.

 

Found in bees and wasps in New Zealand, the virus had contributed to declines in honey bee populations around the world.

 

Invasive ants carry virus linked to bee deaths - National - NZ Herald News

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And here's another newly discovered virus they're hoping to control the A.ants with..

 

Like colonial Europeans carrying smallpox to the Americas, the tiny brown Argentine ant may be harboring a dangerous virus that’s killing the world’s already vulnerable honey bees. That’s the conclusion of a new study, which also finds that the ants have their own disease to worry about—one that scientists could target to limit the spread of this invasive species.

 

“I think cataloging the viruses that are widespread in invasive species is very important,” says David Holway, an ecologist at the University of California, San Diego, who was not involved in the study. “The authors have made a good start.”

 

Newly discovered insect virus could combat invasive ants | Science/AAAS | News

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So far DWV is known in ten species of bumble bee, the common wasp, two species of paper wasp, a sand wasp, three other species of Apis bees, cockroaches, earwigs, a spider, several species of solitary bees (Osmia, Andrena, carpenter bees, sweat bees), wax moths, and small hive beetles. It is a growing list. If we add ants, great.

The presence of DWV is not an issue, unless you have varroa.

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Over the years I have pulled out of 3 sites due to argentine ants. I would like to see them get some DWV.

 

Argentine ants can defeat all other ant species found in NZ, eventually we will likely be overrun by them. However there has been one mystery, a site of mine where there were argentine ants, then they vanished and were replaced by other ants. Maybe it was one of those viruses.

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Over the years I have pulled out of 3 sites due to argentine ants. I would like to see them get some DWV.

 

Argentine ants can defeat all other ant species found in NZ, eventually we will likely be overrun by them. However there has been one mystery, a site of mine where there were argentine ants, then they vanished and were replaced by other ants. Maybe it was one of those viruses.

I found these just yesterday under one lid. Just a small colony. I stuck some grass under the lid as usual.

Does this not deter Argentine ants like it does the black ones?

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Not sure but in any case it won't kill them, if they are argentine ants they will eventually build to huge numbers and bother the bees, they take honey and brood right out of the combs.

Yikes, now I have to remember which hive I saw them on.....bummer!:eek:

Cos I put grass under every lid as a precaution to keep ants out. Whilst the grass is damp - no ants.

When the grass dries out - ants come back. :confused:

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