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Carniolan Bees

Carniolan bees are dark with brown spots or bands on their abdomen. They’re slightly smaller than other races of bees, but that doesn’t seem to correlate to their ability to forage and bring pollen and nectar stores back to the hive.


Carniolan bees come from the Austrian Alps, Yugoslavia, and Danube Valley regions. They can be found across much of Eastern Europe including Hungary, Croatia, and Bosnia-Herzegovina.


Carniolan bees are incredibly gentle and easy to work with. Due to their region of origin, they are more likely to forage on cold, wet days than other types of bees and rank among the best for overwintering.

In addition, they create very little propolis and build up their numbers rapidly in the spring. Carniolan bees are also adept at handling dearths and rapidly adjust brood production based on the availability of food. They are a little more likely to swarm than Italians, so it’s important to be sure they have plenty of room.

When it comes to hive diseases and pests, Carniolan bees tend to be quite capable of fending off parasites and show good resistance to some diseases.