8. Concluding comments

Tropilaelaps mites, particularly T. mercedesae and T. clareae, present a serious threat to world beekeeping and hence they deserve the immediate attention of the global research community. Of the two species, T. mercedesae is the more likely species to spread out of Asia, as it is found throughout mainland Asia and South East Asia, while T. clareae is confined just to the Philippines.

Evidence suggests that while these two species may be as, if not more, pathogenic to A. mellifera as V. destructor, they may be easier to control for small-scale beekeepers. However, large-scale commercial beekeepers that manage hundreds and thousands of bee colonies, and cannot afford the time to keep them broodless for even short periods, will find these mites as difficult to control as V. destructor.

Pre-emptive research carried out on Tropilaelaps mites before they spread globally is far more desirable than reactive research carried out once the mites have spread, as it reduces potential future losses and hardship for beekeepers.