How can I tell the difference between small hive beetle larvae and wax moth larvae?

Bee Health May 14, 2012 Print Friendly and PDF

Small hive beetle larvae often congregate in corners, possibly to retain heat. This clustering distinguishes beetle larvae from wax moth larvae that are found scattered throughout weak colonies. Other distinguishing characteristics include size. Beetle larvae never reach the size of mature wax moth larvae. Also, beetle larvae have three pairs of jointed, “true” legs located behind the head. Wax moth larvae have many small, fleshy, uniform legs along the length of the body. And the bodies of beetle larvae have tough exteriors while those of wax moth larvae are soft and easily penetrated. - John Skinner, University of Tennessee

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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.