Content of the article:
The bee breeds that exist in the world today are the result of natural and artificial selection started by humans during their development.ii beekeeping and beekeeping.
As a result, insects living in different parts of the world differ not only in many external features, they have their own disposition, resistance to diseases and parasites, as well as the productivity of queens and, of course, honey-bearing ability.
When choosing a breed of bees for an apiary, the beekeeper must start from the combination of all these features and conditions of detention in specific climatic conditions. Southern bee species, for example, show themselves to be excellent honey pickers, but they will not be able to survive the long winters of the northern regions; therefore, their positive qualities are unlikely to be appreciated.
In Russia, located in several climatic zones, several breeds of honey bees belonging to the species Apis mellifera have been recognized.
Breeds of bees: 1 — gray mountain Caucasian;2 — yellow Caucasian;3 — Italian;4 — Carpathian
However, even with such a variety of choices there are some nuances. On the meadow, where several dozen plants are blooming at the same time, the Central Russian bee will lag far behind in honey collection for Caucasian relatives.
But if there is, for example, a buckwheat field or a planting another honey culture near the apiary, then the Central Russian breed of bees will be out of competition due to the innate commitment to receive a bribe from one plant until its flowering ends. Caucasian honeybees are less finicky and work hard wherever there is the slightest hint of nectar.
Descriptions and photos of breeds of bees will help to get an idea about those or other insects, their capabilities and features.
Dark European or Central Russian bee( Apis mellifera mellifera)
Aboriginal for Northern and Central Europe, the bee species is marked dark gray, without a hint of yellow color. This is a fact, as well as the prevalence in the territory of the central regions of Russia, and determined the name of the breed of bees.
These are rather large insects that make the beekeepers happy with disease resistance and an excellent ability to survive the frosty long winters, being in a winter ground for up to seven months a year. Uterus of this breed per day can lay up to three thousand eggs, which ensures a quick change of generations and the growth of families. At the same time, European honeybees are not prone to the formation of swarms and are quite peaceful. However, they are noticeably nervous if the beekeeper shows neglect to them or allows too harsh, harsh interference in the affairs of the hive.
The special commitment of insects to harvesting only from one honey plant on the one hand makes it possible to produce delicious monocultural honey, for example, from acacia, buckwheat, linden and other plants, but on the other hand, it leads to a delay in the transition of bees from already almost faded to new,the best honey plants.
The storage of honey in the Middle Russian breed of bees begins at the top of the hull or shops, and only then the stocks appear in the brood area.
Gray mountain Caucasian breed of bees( Apis mellifera caucasica)
Gray Caucasian mountain bee differs from the Central Russian breed of bees by its ability to quickly move from one honey plant to another, with its large size, but lower winter hardiness. This population mainly lives in the southern regions of the country, especially popular in the apiaries of the northern Caucasus and foothill areas.
A gray mountain bee uterus is able to lay back up to one and a half thousand eggs. Moreover, in the days of the most intensive honey gathering for a bribe, even bees fly out of the hive, at another time more busy caring for the future generation. Gray Caucasian bees are champions among honey-bearing fellows by the length of the tongue, reaching 7.2 mm.
This bee breed is characterized by an early departure from the hive and a very late evening return. Insects are not afraid of fog and drizzling rain, even in this, not the most suitable for the bees weather, they continue to collect, and not averse to profit at the expense of gaping fellows.
Priokskaya variety of Central Russian bee breed
An intermediate variety called Priokskaya was bred on the basis of Caucasian gray insects and Central Russian bees. These honeybees have a smaller length than the Caucasians, the length of the proboscis, they are better adapted to the frosty Russian winters, more resistant to diseases and a bit more aggressive. According to external signs, this species of bees rather resembles its mountain ancestors. In insects, the predominant gray color, yellow markings are found only occasionally, on the upper segments of the abdomen.
Krainsky bee( Apis mellifera carnica)
Bees from Krajina and Carinthia received European fame more than a hundred years ago. A characteristic feature of these insects has become not only a striking peacefulness, but also the ability to quickly and efficiently collect honey in the conditions of a transient alpine spring, when bribes are not pleasing in abundance. At the same time, according to the photos and descriptions, this breed of bees is characterized by good winter hardiness and endurance on hot summer days. The maintenance in the winter of small families of the Krajina bee is very economical.
Today, the Krainsky breed of bees or karnik, one of the most popular species in Europe. The body of the insect is distinguished by a gray-silver color. Bees fly out early from the hive, which allows you to take bribes from the very first spring honey plants. According to statistics, only a third of families can swarm, and, if they start the appropriate work on time, it is easy for them to return the working attitude. In agriculture, the breed of bees is valued as a pollinator for red clover. The proboscis reaches a length of 6.8 mm.
The queen bee lays from 1.5 to 2 thousand eggs per day.
That is, karnik, as a breed of bees, combines the best qualities of gray Caucasian and Carpathian insects. First of all, when a mass honey collection takes place, the bees fill the honeycombs with brood brood, and then move to the store frames.
Carpathian bee( Apis mellifera carpatica)
Another breed of European honeybees by place of origin and habitat is called Carpathian. The predominant color in the color of the bee of the Carpathian is gray. The insect has a long, up to 7 mm proboscis, good winter hardiness, peace-loving nature and low sugar content in honey. Uterus of this species of bees lay up to 1,800 eggs per day.
The breed features include early readiness of working bees to harvest honey. However, with a lot of positive qualities, the Carpathian bees have a number of drawbacks. To such can be attributed the tendency to the appropriation of someone else's bribe, if there is a shortage of flowering honey plants in the district, as well as the absence of any resistance to the wax moth penetrating the hive.
Italian honey bee( Apis mellifera liqustica)
Breed from southern Europe compared to other relatives has a more golden color, the highest fecundity of females, up to 3500 eggs per day, excellent disease resistance and low probability of swarming.
The southern origin of this breed of bees has determined not too high resistance of insects. But the bees of the Italian variety are quickly moving from the honey plant to the honey plant, looking for the most profitable bribes, as well as exceptionally clean.
A huge number of eggs laid by the uterus predetermined one feature that must be taken into account when working with insects. The brood for this breed is paramount, and with a small amount of honey collection, the bees can give all the bribes to the younger generation.
Asian, honey bees
European insects belonging to the species Apis mellifera are not widely distributed in Asia. Here for many thousands of years has developed its own population of bees and the tradition of beekeeping and beekeeping.
Today, experts have up to nine species of bees, indigenous to the Asian part of the world. Among them the most famous and interesting are: Apis dorsata, Apis cerana, Apis florea.
A bright representative of the bee family is the Himalayan mountain giant bee Apis dorsata laboriosa with a dark belly, decorated with thin white stripes. This breed lives on steep cliffs, where it builds huge honeycombs up to 160 meters long and about 80 cm wide by European standards.the most friendly himalayan bees.
Dwarf Asian bee or Apis florea dwarf constructs honeycombs on trees or shrubs. The modest size of insects, first described in the XVIII century, suggest that these bees are one of the smallest not only in Asia, but on the entire planet. For the year, the family of these honey bees can collect no more than a kilogram of honey, but they firmly protect their nests and are valued in agriculture as pollinating insects.
A Chinese wax bee or Apis cerana can be considered an equal rival to a European honeybee. This species of Indian or Himalayan bees is widespread in most regions of Asia. There are these insects in the Russian Far East. For example, in the Primorsky Territory, this breed of honey bees included in the Red Book can sometimes be seen in the forest zone.