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Saving Our Native Dark Honey Bee

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Saving the UK's

Native Honey Bee

Patagonia Action Works

Please help B4 1% for the Planet grantee

conserve our British native honey bee.

Home Purpose

The Project

The B4 Project is a Community Interest Company representing a group of beekeepers whose aim is to protect the UK’s native dark honey bee, Apis mellifera mellifera

The purpose of the B4 Project is to conserve, protect and increase the population of Apis mellifera mellifera,  the European Dark  Honey Bee  (EDHB),  by the fusion of science and beekeeping. This will be achieved by:

  • Setting up reserves with like-minded beekeepers.

  • Working closely with scientists to identify genetic purity of samples taken geographically.

  • Informing the public about the EDHB.

  • Influencing decision makers.

The B4 Project is proud to have worked with and been supported by:


The Purpose

With the purpose

  • We will survey colonies of honey bees within the South West Peninsula, including possible feral colonies, to ascertain the distribution and quality of the Apis mellifera mellifera (Amm) population.

  • We want to involve a wide a population of beekeepers in Cornwall in the conservation of the Cornish Amm population.

  • The improved breeding stock of Cornish Amm will provide a good starting point for research involving disease resistance. It is much easier to improve bee stock with a pure strain than a hybridized one.  Disease resistance is known in the Cornish Dark Bee population particularly Varroa tolerance.


The Way Forward

  • Working from Cornwall

  • Reduce the reliance on imported bees

  • Greatly reduce the importation of bees at Governmental level

  • Collaboration with Land Owners /Eden/Paignton/Heligan

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