Native Irish Honey Bee Society – Apis mellifera mellifera

Native Irish Honey Bee Society
Apis mellifera mellifera

Native Honey Bee information

The Native Honey Bee has many important traits. Here are just some:

Known as ‘Black Bees’ due to appearance, but colouration may vary.

Naturally adapted to the Irish climate.

5 frame nucCan be easily bred for docility and low swarming.

While their populations are smaller than those of other honey bees, they may compensate for this by being longer lived.

Excellent at sparing their stores during bad weather.

Can fly at lower temperatures

Excellent honey producers when they get the weather.

3 Responses

  1. A Chara,

    Have noted with interest the NUIG expression of interest in survey and search for native Irish bees.

    Living quite remotely, near Attymon, Athenry, Co. Galway, a nature corridor adjacent to and on the edge of Raford Bog SAC, bees are a common sight. Several years ago, I observed a natural swarming in the feature sycamore tree of my cottage garden. Over the year,s here we have created a garden as a natural wildlife haven, with fruit and berry planting, trees and shrubs, indigenous varieties in the main. Crab Apple and Holly, Honeysuckle and Blackberry abound.

    Always keenly interested in bee-keeping, recognising their significant role as pollinators to mankind, I often regret not having taken time to develop this interest further, but, perhaps at a later point in time. This evening, following the article from NUIG, I photographed bees foraging on meadow wildflowers in a neighbouring field. From the photograph I cannot determine if these are the native black bee or another strain, however, it was cool, breezy and inclement so these are hardy fellows.

    Here the wild Irish Hare is at home, newts are making a return and frogs abound. The area in undisturbed with minimal farming activity in recent years creating an ideal sanctury environment for wildlife protection. It is true to say that I’m the only resident in the townland of Lenamore so there is plenty room for native bees!

    A beekeeper I recently chatted mentioned that lime trees are beneficial and attractive for encouaging bees and if so, is there a particular variety we should plant? Further advice welcomed and meanwhile we compliment your website and encourage all involved to keep up the good work.

    As caretakers of this island we all have a duty to preserve and protect the environment for future generations. Our role as stewards must be to respect creation, the land and all its creatures, big and small, including bees



Leave a Reply