Honey Bees

Flying Honey Bee with pollen

A honey bee (or honeybee), in contrast with the stingless honey bee, is any bee that is a member of the genus Apis, primarily distinguished by the production and storage of honey and the construction of perennial, colonial nests from wax. Honey bees are the only extant members of the tribe Apini, all in the genus Apis. Currently, only seven species of honey bee are recognized, with a total of 44 subspecies,[1] though historically, from six to eleven species have been recognized. Honey bees represent only a small fraction of the roughly 20,000 known species of bees. Some other types of related bees produce and store honey, but only members of the genus Apis are true honey bees. The study of honey bees is known as melittology. Beekeeping is a rapidly increasing as a cottage industry, with sharp rises in the Northwestern United states and Western Europe.