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  • 09 November, 2022

  • 5 Min Read

Indian Black Honeybee

Indian Black Honeybee

A new endemic honeybee species has been discovered in the Western Ghats.

Regarding species:

  • Apis karinjodian is the scientific name for the new species, which is also known as the Indian black honeybee.
  • After more than 200 years, it was spotted from the Western Ghats.
  • Fabricius described Apis indica as the last honeybee from India in 1798.
  • Despite the fact that Fabricius named the Indian bee Apis indica, it was not considered a valid species until recently.
  • The researchers restored Apis indica's status using the 'Radio-Medial Index,' a new measure for species discrimination in honeybees (RMI)
  • Apis karinjodian has evolved from Apis cerana morphotypes that got acclimatised to the hot and humid environment of the Western Ghats.
  • Distribution : The distribution of Apis karinjodian ranges from the central Western Ghats and Nilgiris to the southern Western Ghats, covering the States of Goa, Karnataka, Kerala and parts of Tamil Nadu.
  • Till date, only a single species, Apis cerana was noted across the plains of central and southern India and Sri Lanka as a ‘fairly uniform population’ in the Indian subcontinent.
  • Protection Status : The species has been classified as near threatened (NT) in the State based on the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria.
  • Relevance : The research has given a new direction to apiculture in the country by proving that it has three species of cavity nesting honey bees viz Apis indica, Apis cerana, and Apis karinjodian, the last being visibly dark in appearance.
  • The ability of the Indian black honey bee to produce higher quantities of honey, which is thicker in consistency, opens up new avenues for increasing honey production.
  • The new find has increased the species of honeybees in the world to 11.

Source: The hindu

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