A One-Health Model for Reversing Honeybee (Apis mellifera L.) Decline

Philip Donkersley*, Emily Elsner-Adams, Siobhan Maderson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (SciVal)
101 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Global insect decline impacts ecosystem resilience; pollinators such as honeybees (Apis mellifera L.) have suffered extensive losses over the last decade, threatening food security. Research has focused discretely on in-hive threats (e.g., Nosema and Varroa destructor) and broader external causes of decline (e.g., agrochemicals, habitat loss). This has notably failed to translate into successful reversal of bee declines. Working at the interdisciplinary nexus of entomological, social and ecological research, we posit that veterinary research needs to adopt a “One-Health” approach to address the scope of crises facing pollinators. We demonstrate that reversing declines will require integration of hive-specific solutions, a reappraisal of engagement with the many stakeholders whose actions affect bee health, and recontextualising both of these within landscape scale efforts. Other publications within this special issue explore novel technologies, emergent diseases and management approaches; our aim is to place these within the “One-Health” context as a pathway to securing honeybee health. Governmental policy reform offers a particularly timely pathway to achieving this goal. Acknowledging that healthy honeybees need an interdisciplinary approach to their management will enhance the contributions of veterinary research in delivering systemic improvements in bee health.
Original languageEnglish
Article number119
Number of pages14
JournalVeterinary Sciences
Volume7
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 27 Aug 2020

Keywords

  • Apis mellifera
  • Beekeeper
  • Honeybee
  • Landscape
  • Nexus
  • One-health
  • Pathogens

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