Scandinavia has a long-standing tradition of queen-breeding. There are legally sanctioned mating stations mainly located on some of the many islands. These islands are reserved for queen breeders.
The bees were original Apis mellifera mellifera – also known as the black bee. Scandinavia has protected areas with pure breed of Apis melifera melifera.
Local traditions and changes in the landscape did over the years decide what types of honeybees are used in the different countries.
Denmark is strong on the development on Buckfast bees. Other races as carnica and ligustica are used as well. Denmark is proud of having the island of Læsø where the black bee is conserved and well established.
Norway has it national breeding program on Apis mellifera carnica, this is the main beerace, and a very strong focus on conserving the black bees. Conservations areas are given here as well. Buckfast bees are increasing during the years.
Sweden is a mixture but having a strong apis mellifera ligustica society. Here as well Buckfast is getting increasingly common. The black bee society is strong and focus on conserving the original black bees.
Søren Langberg Simonsen
Rune Havgaard Sørensen
The Danish Beekeepers Association