Pest description The small hive beetle was first reported to occur in the United States in 1998. The SHB is believed to be native to sub-Saharan Africa and now can be found in most states in the U.S. As a hive pest, SHB larvae feed on honey and pollen stores and may also affect brood combs. The major SHB problem reported from states where the beetle occurs has been damage to stored honey and combs. Storage of honey under conditions of reduced relative humidity (< 50%) has been shown to be effective in preventing SHB egg hatch and reducing larval damage. This pest was reported in Washington State in 2008, but has not been associated with significant losses of stored honey, equipment or live colonies.