The Carniolan Bee

carniolan_beeThe Slovenian territory is the original territory of the Carniolan bee – Apis mellifera carnica, Pollmann 1879. Its thorax is covered in brownish grey hair, and the rings on its abdomen are dark with light spots on the first and the second ring. A modest consumption of winter food supplies is typical of the Carniolan bee, as it spends the winter in smaller communities. Its spring development is incredibly lively though, as the family develops fast enough to be able to exploit the nectar. If the amount of nectar is low in nature, the Carniolan bee adapts by decreasing the number of eggs laid. Another feature of the Carniolan bee is the greater ability of orientation. It is also a good honeycomb builder and famous for its intense propolis production. In modern beekeeping, the tendency to swarm is not desirable; however, this particular species is more prone to it. This shows in longer swarming seasons and in a larger number of swarms during the season. Another special advantage of the “grey bee” is its calmness.

The Carniolan bee is one of the protected species in Slovenia. Beekeepers are not allowed to bring in any other bee species.