Apis cerana group

Home » Apis cerana group

Apis cerana group

The common name for Apis cerana is the Asian hive bee.  It is sometimes incorrectly named Apis indica, a classification that is now historic.  Apis cerana is indigenous to Asia between Afghanistan and Japan, and occurs from Russia and China in the north to southern Indonesia.  Apis cerana has been introduced recently to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.  Apis cerana builds a nest consisting of a series of parallel combs, similar in style to Apis mellifera, and builds its nest within a cavity.  As with Apis mellifera, Apis cerana occurs over a huge geographical area, and it varies in size throughout its range: tropical races are smaller bees, with smaller colonies.  Apis cerana bees are smaller than Apis mellifera, and they form colonies smaller than Apis mellifera.  The foraging range may be also smaller.

There are many different races of Apis cerana, as could be expected from the wide range of habitats it occupies from temperate mountain regions to tropical islands.  It is possible that some races of Apis cerana will in the near future be recognised as separate species.  Other honey bee species in Asia showing behaviour similar to Apis cerana are Apis koschevnikovi, Apis nigrocincta and Apis nuluensis.  These gentle species of bees have long been managed as useful honey bees in many parts of Asia and their honey and wax valued.

Apis cerana does not produce propolis.  Since it is a cavity nesting bee, it is possible to keep Apis cerana in a wide range of hive types and movable frame hives and movable comb hives (top-bar hives) have been developed for Apis cerana and the other cavity nesting hive bees.  Their gentle nature allows these bees to be kept close to home and in many places are kept in logs hanging from the eaves of houses, or in specially designed cavities built into the walls of houses.

Find out more
  • Journal Edition Number
  • Journal Series
  • Resource Format Text
  • File Type
  • File Size 0.00 KB
  • Language English
  • Region
  • Country
  • Author Bees for Development
  • Publisher Bees for Development
  • Published Date October 2016
  • Rate this resource
    You already voted!