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Nordic Brown Bee

Apis mellifera mellifera. Brown bees

Nordic Brown bees (Apis mellifera mellifera). Photo taken by Joachim Tscherpel.

The brown bee, Apis mellifera mellifera, is the honeybee subspecies that occurs natively in the Nordic region. In the 20th century, other honeybee subspecies were introduced to this region by beekeepers. Today, the native brown bee is considered a threatened breed due to displacement by and hybridisation with these other subspecies. The Nordic Countries’ national reports on Animal Genetic Resources to FAO all mention this breed.

A previous activity has summarised the status of the Nordic Brown Bee and defined an action plan. There is a need to follow up on this activity to identify and coordinate activities to promote conservation and utilisation of the Nordic Brown Bee.

We are currently focussing on two activities: 1. collection of traditional knowledge on Brown Bee specific management, in the form of a wiki and 2. a network of Brown Bee stakeholders to promote collaboration, knowledge sharing and exchange of breeding material.