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The specialist international beekeeping organisation
The Aculeate group of the order Hymenoptera includes bees, ants and wasps. Bees, with few exceptions, feed on food of plant origin, especially pollen. Consequently, they are important pollinators of natural vegetation and crops. They are biologically diverse with 1200 genera, and around 30,000 species, around half of them named by science. They include social, semi-social and solitary bees all with their own importance as part of ecological biodiversity.
Only two types of bee groups are exploited by humans for direct gain. There are a number of species of stingless bees whose honey is often particularly valued for its special medicinal properties. The other major group of exploited bees are the honey bees (Apis mellifera). Honeybees are classified into the family Apidae and the genus Apis. They characteristically control their brood nest temperature, keep their brood separate from their food, and live exclusively on pollen and honey. There are four accepted groupings of honeybee species with three of these species groups further subdivided into additional species.
Further, within the species groupings of the honey bees, separate subspecies or races are also recognised. The behavioural and biological characteristics of each race can be distinctive and each race will have their own value and disadvantages for the beekeepers wishing to keep them. In general these differences arise in response to evoloutionary pressures and so enable each race to maximise its capacity for survival withn a given environment. In particular, there are significant differences between tropical and subtropical and European races of honey bees. This is an evolutionary consequence of adaptation to different habitats. The difference between races is so marked that it affects the management of these differing bees. However, even within races, there can be tremendous genetic variation and determining what is a typical honey bee race is often subjective. These naturally occurring genetic variations are what bee breeders use to enhance desired characteristics and reduce those that are less desirable.
10 documents and 0 reference documents found
Human association with honeybees is a long one. We have and continue to move bees beekeeping equipment and the products of bees as we travel. Thus it was not unusual for Brazilian beekeepers ...
Caron D.M., published 2001, BPO Text on this website
Book in English
Paolo Fontana and others
Declaration (pdf file)
Sichuan Yunnan and Tibet, in-house note to file n/a 41760 PDF on this website
Report (pdf file) in English
Ahmad F Joshi SR and Gurung MB, published 2003, ICIMOD International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development External Link
In tropical America stingless bees are diverse and numerous and are important pollinators. Although stingless bees do produce honey and are exploited by man they are very different from Apis ...
Sommeijer M. J., published 1991, Bees for Development 18 12 Text on this website
Article in English
Maung Maung Nyein, published 1984, American Bee Journal Vol 124 July PDF on this website
Article (pdf file) in English
Bezabeh A., published 2008, Bees for Development Journal 88 7 PDF on this website
Article (pdf file) in English
AFRICANIZED HONEY BEES arrived in Honduras in 1985. Since then they have outmanoeuvred their transplanted and tropically-frail European cousins. Apiculture in Honduras has become a battle; ...
Poovey C., published 1992, Bees for Development 25 41826 undefined
Article in English
Stingless bees in Guyana Ahnand Rajkumar There are several species of indigenous bees in the interior forested areas of Guyana. They all have unique defences. One deposits a very sticky substance ...
Rajkumar A, published 2007, Bees for Development 82 9 Text on this website
Article In Bfd Journal in English
Macaharia J. Raina S. and Muli E., published 2007, Bees for Development 83 9 PDF on this website
Article In Bfd Journal (pdf file) in English
Bees and flowering plants have evolved during a period of 130 million years to become increasingly dependent upon one another. Today there are 20,000-30,000 species of bees of which around ...
There is sometimes confusion over what constitutes a subspecies or a race of honey bees. The differentiation is based either on morphometry: the measurement of body parts such as wing veins, ...
All honey bees are classified into the genus Apis and the family Apidae . There are four accepted groupings of honeybee species each morphologically distinct. Each of the Asian species groups ...
The best known of all the bees is the honey bee, as people have been harvesting their honey and wax for at least seven thousand years. However, the thousands of bee species occurring worldwide ...
Bees with the necessary honey-storing characteristics to be exploited by humans for their honey belong either to the subfamily Meliponini that contains severalgenera of stingless bees, or to ...