BIBBA Bee Improvement and Breeding Groups

Local Groups

BIBBA encourages the formation of local queen rearing groups to aid the improvement of local bees and to support the objectives of BIBBA to improve and propagate the native and near native honey bees.

Benefits of Local Groups
Many beekeepers only have a small number of colonies, so they find it easier to work with others. A group will have beekeepers with different expertise that can be pooled. Even the newest beekeepers can have a useful role until they gain knowledge and experience.A local group can pool expertise of different disciplines… honey bee management, record keeping, queen rearing, equipment making, administration, etc. More beekeepers means there are more colonies to select material from and to provide good quality drones, as well as maximising the number of colonies under management, evaluation and study.Groups can liaise with one another and with scientific institutions if they wish. They can distribute genetic material beyond their own confines to wider circles of beekeepers, thereby improving bees overall.

Where to now?
Check the map and view the entries below; if there is a group near you then get in touch, otherwise contact the groups secretary

Forming a bee improvement and breeding group
There are several things you need to consider including:-

  • Do you need a constitution, so members know what is expected?
  • What assessment criteria do you want in your bees?
  • How are you going to operate?
  • Do you need funding?
  • Can you combine with a local BKA?

You may already have the expertise, but if not, then BIBBA can offer help and tuition, perhaps from other groups or experienced individuals. We ask only that one person in a group is a member of BIBBA, although we hope more will join over time.

Abberton Reservoir – Essex

This new group is being set up; contact Kevin Thorn ...

Stratford-upon-Avon BIG – CV37

Group formed in 2006, our aim is to continue our efforts to improve the Amm characteristics of the local bee population in the District for the benefit of the Association members and to expand our area of influence to other like minded beekeepers in the locality ...
East Midlands Bee Breeding Group

East Midlands Bee Breeding Group

The East Midlands BIBBA group have, for many years, worked together in a bee breeding programme on the Derbyshire Nottinghamshire border. In 2017 BIBBA East Midlands will meet at the Thrumpton Apiary throughout the season from mid Spring, at 2pm on a Sunday ...
South Devon Bee Improvers Group (SDBIG)

South Devon Bee Improvers Group (SDBIG)

The group is called South Devon Bee Improvers Group (SDBIG) Area covered: Devon, south of Exeter and including the eastern side of Dartmoor and Plymouth (the South Hams and Teignbridge districts of South Devon are likely to contain most of our activities. ) Contact: Phil Chandler 07891554012 ...
Leek and Moorlands Beekeepers - ST9

Leek and Moorlands Beekeepers – ST9

This group has been raising queens for over 30 years and welcomes beekeepers of all levels of experience. In 2017 we plan to utilise the Vince Cooke method for cell raising, with Jenter, cell-punch and grafting for obtaining larvae.  Apidea mini-nucs will be used for mating ...
Sheffield Rivelin Bee Breeding Group - S6

Sheffield Rivelin Bee Breeding Group – S6

Working towards selective breeding of local bees. contact Phil Khorassandjian ...
Ardnamurchan Native Black Bee Project - PH36

Ardnamurchan Native Black Bee Project – PH36

With black bees from Colonsay and funding from BIBBA, the project was set up in 2014 in Glenborrodale, Ardnamurchan. The apiaries are remote enough to allow pure breeding, we believe. Kate Atchley ...

Galtee Bee Breeding Group

The Galtee Bee Breeding Group was formed in the year 1991 with the object of conservation, study and improvement of the native strains of dark European Honeybee Apis mellifera mellifera in the Galtee/Vee valley and surrounding areas of South Tipperary. (more…)

B4Project Community Interest Company – Cornwall

The B4Project Aims to:-
1. Establish the extent, uniqueness and quality of native Amm stocks that are present within Cornwall.
2. Identify potential areas of conservation and protection of Cornish Amm stocks.
3. Encourage local groups to use local stock.

Cornwall Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders Group – TR27

Assessment of colonies for the degree of varroa tolerance via grooming, removal and damage. Selection of the best for drone and queen production. (more…)

The Marches Group – SY10

We operate on a small scale in the Tanat Valley, rearing and improving our stocks of native Apis Mellifera Mellifera

contact Steven Jones

Lune Queens and Bees-LA1

New group formed in North Lancashire

Selective breeding and bee improvement for the local area based on AMM. (more…)

Upper Maelor-LL11

Our group operates on the high ground above Wrexham. The starting point of our activity has focused upon the villages of Bwlchgwyn, Gwynfryn, Minera and Coedpoeth. (more…)


contact M Mends

01646 600341

Upper Dee Bee Improvement Group

This group covers a substantial area stretching from the Dee valley (Glyn Dyfrdwy) between Corwen and Bala and Westwards to Cwm Main on the edge of the Snowdonia National Park. The aim of the group is to achieve a high percentage of quality native or near-native drones in the district so that everyone in the area can let their virgins mate freely, (more…)

Stiperstones & Long Mynd Area Bee Breeders – SY15

SLABB [Stiperstones & Long Mynd Area Bee Breeders] is based in mid Shropshire/adjacent Welsh Marches. Core activities centre around selective breeding from the best near-native bees and local bees (more…)

Dark Bee Conservation Group – WF5

West Yorkshire group aiming to promote and improve the local bee whilst preserving the natural honey bee diversity, reduce colony losses and reduce the dependence on therapeutic and chemical treatments.

contact Stuart Atkinson (more…)

Denbigh Vale of Clwyd – LL16

Denbigh, Ruthin and outlying areas. Queen rearing, selective breeding and bee improvement.

contact Steve Cawthray

Wight Bees – PO35

Bee Improvement on the Isle of Wight

contact Derek Sothcott 01983 873804

Clwydian Range – CH7

Part of the North East Wales group

contact Geoff Critchley

download the Groups Handbook here; there is also information in BIM 33