Editor: Lovleen Marwaha

The Wax Moth: A Problem or a Solution?

eBook: US $39 Special Offer (PDF + Printed Copy): US $63
Printed Copy: US $43
Library License: US $156
ISBN: 978-981-5123-83-8 (Print)
ISBN: 978-981-5123-82-1 (Online)
Year of Publication: 2023
DOI: 10.2174/97898151238211230101


The Wax Moth: A Problem or a Solution? Covers the biology, development, morphometric characters, pheromones, mating and reproduction of the greater wax moth, which is a major pest in bee colonies. It also gives tips to beekeeping enthusiasts and professionals on how to manage wax moth infestations. Finally, it elucidates the involvement of wax moths in plastic degradation.

Key Features

· A complete overview of the basic biology of the greater wax moth.

·A quick guide on wax moth pest control.

· Tips for beekeepers to enhance colony growth for sustainable apiculture.

· Information for researchers on the wax moth’s involvement in plastic degradation.

· Simple text for readers of all levels

· References for additional reading

The Wax Moth: A Problem or a Solution? Is a comprehensive yet quick reference that is ideal for entomology and agriculture students, researchers, academicians and beekeepers (both professional and hobbyist).


Honey bees, next to man, are the most wonderful creation of God. There is nothing that a honey bee does, right from the production of sweet honey to the painful sting it inflicts, which is not in one way or another useful for man. The hive of the honey bee is a treasure vault of valuable products that attract mankind and other animals. No wonder then that the bee hive is under attack from pests, parasites, and enemies. The wax moth is one such problem in apiaries. Belonging to the order Lepidoptera of the class Hexapoda, there are two types of wax moth-infesting honey bee colonies the world over; the greater wax moth Galleria melonella and the lesser wax moth Achroia grisella. Old combs, combs in storage and unattended weak colonies are more prone to attacks which can be seen in the form of hard-cocooned pupae on the top of bee frames and anastomosing silken threads of webbing on the surface of the comb. The larvae tunnel through the wax comb, feeding on it and damaging comb and brood in a manner that hinders honey bee life processes ultimately lead to absconding, causing economic loss to the beekeeper. The problem, therefore, needs to be urgently attended and there are chemical, biological, and physical measures for the same. The book addresses all these in a clear and immaculate manner. What is more interesting is the novel concept of utilizing this pest for its more useful activity of plastic degradation. An insect capable of metabolizing complex fatty acids and esters making up beeswax can definitely adapt to digesting similar components that constitute plastic. Whether this is done with the help of gut microbiome as in some cellulose-digesting insects such as termites and cockroaches or by the insect’s own enzymes is the unresolved question. This chapter in the book makes it an interesting reading material. Honey bee lovers, parasitologists, entomologists, naturalists, and environmentalists, will definitely enjoy the book. My good wishes to the author.

Neelima R.Kumar
Department of Zoology
Panjab University
Chandigarh. 160014.