Zombie flies and why we are lucky to live in the UK

A friend in Washington State, USA sent me a link to an article relating to zombie flies. Actually the flies are decapitating flies because that is apparently what they do to honeybees.

However we are seeing an unprecedented rise in invasive species being introduced into the UK from all manner of places and I have seen any number of the sort that affect trees ranging from viruses to fungal infections and insect plagues which would not normally have survived our winters a few years ago. Now we have drier and milder winters so we have more of these critters surviving and causing mayhem to our indigenous species. I bet it won’t be long before we have zombie flies living and breeding in the UK honey bee population.

http://earthfix.opb.org/flora-and-fauna/article/latest-threat-to-honeybees-attack-of-the-zombie-fl/

I wonder how long it will be before we find them being blamed for CCD?

 

Meanwhile we are lucky to live here because at least we have a system in place to monitor for most things and being an island isolates us from a lot of invasive plagues. Would be a different story if we were still linked to mainland Europe.

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4 Responses to Zombie flies and why we are lucky to live in the UK

  1. charltonestatetrust says:

    Great blog! Charlton Estate Trust are based in Wantage, Oxfordshire – we’re kinda locals!!!!

    Like

    • Paul says:

      Hi! Thank you for the compliment. Always glad to correspond with other beeks. What kind of hives do you use and what kind of problems do you have down in Wantage – has it been an unusually bad year for forage for you too? From your photos you seem to have got a lot more honey than me this year 8)

      Not quite clear from your own blog what the Trust is for, is it a garden open to the public promoting permaculture, or mainly a bee thing?

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      • charltonestatetrust says:

        The main problem this year is preventing the bees from starving.
        I use national hives.
        I only got 6 jars of honey this year!!!!
        Where exactly are you folk based?

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  2. Paul says:

    We got about 5 jars (three plus some pretty honey-in-the-comb) from a single hive; didn’t think the other TBH could spare any this year.
    You can see a rough map of where we are on the “About” page of this blog: the bee symbols are meant to represent members of this group. No one as far south as Wantage, though I work in Abingdon.
    Are you in OBKA? They have occasional meetings and a lot of cumulative experience with bees in general and Nationals in particular, though their standard training doesn’t encourage what I’d call “low intervention” beekeeping.

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