American foulbrood

American foulbrood

Photo by Food and Environment Research Agency (Fera), Crown Copyright

  • Fatal brood disease caused by a bacterium that is ingested by young bee larvae
  • Spores germinate in the bee’s gut and the developing bee usually dies at the pre-pupal or pupal stage
  • Symptoms include irregular brood patterns, sunken and discoloured cell cappings with perforations
  • Decaying infected larvae may be roped to a distance of 2-3 cm
  • The bacterium is very infectious and remains dormant for over 50 years
  • Present throughout Australia, but not confirmed in NT or Kangaroo Island


Scientific name: Paenibacillus larvae
EPPRD Category:
Life Form: Bacteria

Pest Documents

FS: fact sheet

CP: contingency plan

DP: diagnostic protocol