These are some bees breeds that beekeepers adopt in their activity. Choosing the kind of bee you want is an important task, so you better check this article!
Italian bee (A. m. ligustica): this is the most popular sub specie of bee, particularly in North America and Europe. These honey bees are extremely productive, gentle and present a medium disease tolerance (varroa) and resistance in cold climates. They also present some weaknesses such as the lack of vitality, excessive brood rearing and high consumption of stores.
Carniolan bee (A. m. carnica): These are the second most popular bee and they’re native from the mountains of Slovenia and Austria and also the balkans. They’re very similar in terms of gentleness, disease tolerance and wintering to italian bees, but they’re not equally productive. However, this type also exhibits a strong tendency to swarm. Carniolan bees can keep a small winter colony, requiring then smaller stores of food.
Russian bees: In the late 90s, the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) imported this specie of bee from the region of Primorsky Krai in Russia. These honey bees have developed a high resistance to pesky mites, so they are better at coping with the parasites that have created so much trouble for other strains of bees. Russian bees have tend to curtail brood production when pollen and nectar are in short supply, which results in a smaller winter colony.
Comparing to the aforementioned breeds, the russian bees are equally gentle and productive, and better at disease tolerance and wintering in cold climates.
Caucasian bee (A. m. caucasica): the caucasian (georgian) honey bee is native from the mountains of Caucasus, in Georgia. These bees are quite gentle and calm on the comb, and make extensive use of propolis, which can be sometimes a bit of a challenge to beekeepers. However, these bees also present some disadvantages like the susceptibility to nosema disease, the fact that the colonies don’t reach full strength until mid-summer and they are extremely prone to robbing honey, creating then a chaotic apiary.
Which breed of honey bees do you use? What is your experience as a beekeeper? Write us and tell us about it!