Native Irish Honey Bee Society

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“The Native Irish Honey Bee, Apis mellifera melliferafocuses exclusively on the native Irish honey bee, featuring narratives on its evolution, genetics, history and conservation, with practical “How-to” sections on bee improvement, plus real-life stories from commercial beekeepers. Its aims are to increase awareness of and appreciation for the precious resources imbued in the native black honey bee, to encourage beekeepers to choose native Irish honey bees and to discourage the buying and importation of non-native honey bees.

Latest NIHBS News

An Unusual October Observation – Eoghan Mac Giolla Coda (winter 2008)

On October 14th, I was scheduled to remove Bayvarol strips from one of my apiaries.  The day was reasonably mild for the time of year …

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Grafting since 1879 – R. Touchton (autumn 2008)

Grafting Queen-Cells: When was it First Practiced? Reproduced from: Gleanings in Bee Culture, March 15, 1896 Dr. Miller asks, “Who first invented inoculation, or the …

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Natural Selection – Beowulf Cooper (autumn 2008)

Reproduced from: Beowulf Cooper in Village Bees:  The native and near-native bees of Britain and Ireland, April 1968 When a native bee crosses with a …

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Growth in membership

The Native Irish Honey Bee Society now has over 220 members. The next edition of the Four Seasons Magazine should be out shortly. Members receive …

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The Dark Bee in … Southern England – Terry Clare (summer 2008)

As in Ireland, there are variations in environmental conditions throughout England despite both countries having oceanic climates.  For example, north of a line drawn through …

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Queen rearing – Tom Prendergast (spring 2008)

Anyone involved with industry will be familiar with the term “continuous Improvement”.  Beekeepers should adopt a similar approach and implement an improvement programme.  This can …

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About NIHBS

The Native Irish Honey Bee Society was established to promote the conservation of Apis mellifera mellifera throughout the island of Ireland. The Society strives to raise public awareness of our native honey bee and its importance, and acts in an advisory capacity to groups and individuals wishing to promote and preserve it.

What Our Native Honey Bee Looks Like

Apis mellifera mellifera (aka European dark bee) can be distinguished from other subspecies by its stocky body, overall dark coloration, plus abundant thoracic and sparse abdominal hair, which is brown. There can be heavy dark pigmentation of the wings. Overall, when viewed from a distance, these bees should appear blackish or rich dark brown.

Bee Improvement

As part of our conservation mission, NIHBS advocates that Irish beekeepers buy native bees. To that end, NIHBS is affiliated with multiple bee breeding groups located around the country. Find out more about them by clicking the button below.

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