Research reveals that the native bee is still hanging on in parts of the UK where it was believed to be extinct — including Northern Ireland’s north west region.
The bees were largely wiped out by acarine disease in the 1920s, after which beekeepers were forced to rely on imported honeybee subspecies to maintain their hives.
Beekeepers in Ireland have now found populations of the native black bee clinging on in pockets of the west and are using these to revive the breed across the island."
Black honeybee back from the brink of extinction
By Linda Stewart