Beekeeping in Bashkiria: history and conditions for apiaries, honey plants and prospects

Beekeeping in Bashkiria: history and conditions for apiaries, honey plants and prospects

Since 2003, beekeeping in a region like Bashkiria has taken first place among all subjects of the Russian Federation in terms of production of honey and other products that are obtained from bees. In addition to obtaining beeswax, royal jelly, the Bashkir breeds of bees are spreading to other regions. For the first time, beekeeping in this area began its development 1500 years ago, as evidenced by the finds of beekeeping equipment.


Beekeeping is one of the oldest crafts that the inhabitants of Bashkortostan are engaged in. If you look into historical documents, then for the first time honey produced in this region is mentioned in Arabic manuscripts dated 992.In those days, honey was obtained by destroying the nests of wild bees. Starting from the 15th century, the Bashkirs began to engage in beekeeping, later it was replaced by deck beekeeping, and then frame beekeeping, which flourishes in the region today.

Since 1998, Bashkiria has seen an increase in the production of honey and other bee products by 8% annually, which is facilitated by the natural conditions of the region.

Natural conditions of Bashkiria

The Republic of Bashkortostan occupies part of the eastern outskirts of the East European Plain. The western part of this subject of the Russian Federation is flat, the eastern part is mountainous. The specificity of the region lies in the fact that the main part of its territory is covered with forests, in which there are significant areas of honey plants. There are no forest areas of such scale and quality in any region of the Russian Federation. This, together with the special climatic conditions and the richness of the plant world, make Bashkortostan one of the most favorable regions for the development of beekeeping.

Bee breeds

In the process of long evolutionary development in the Republic of Bashkortostan, a unique breed of bees has been formed, which differs from other varieties in its biological and economic and consumer characteristics. As a result of research conducted by employees of the state research center, the standard of the Bashkir bee breed was approved:

  • mass of bees leaving the cells - from 110 to 115 grams;
  • weight of fetal queens - 215 grams;
  • weight of drones - from 235 to 255 grams;
  • body color of queens and drones - dark gray;
  • Egg production of queens - 2000 eggs per day;
  • honey signet - white.

The uniqueness of the Bashkir bees lies in their good winter hardiness and high honey productivity. In addition, the bees are resistant to European foulbrood and honeydew toxicosis. The breed is characterized by high summer activity, as a result of which one family collects up to 150 kg of honey.

Another breed that is used in Bashkortostan to collect honey is Central Russian. Since the formation of the breed took place in difficult conditions, insects are characterized by increased survival. The Central Russian bee in appearance is very different from other varieties that are bred in Russia. Insects have large body sizes, wide paws and a dark gray, almost black color. The fetal uterus weighs about 200 grams and lays 2000 eggs per day, so the development of families is intensive.

The only drawback of the Central Russian bee is its aggressive disposition, insects do not tolerate any interference in their space and well protect their homes not only from thieving bees, but also from humans. The breed is characterized by increased winter hardiness and immunity to most bee diseases.

Main honey plants of Bashkiria

The rich flora of the Republic of Bashkortostan allows you to collect honey throughout the warm season.

Spring honey plants

There are about 40 species of spring honey plants in the region, from which bees collect pollen and nectar. The list of the most common includes the following:

  • spring adonis;
  • true primrose;
  • common viburnum;
  • strawberry;
  • black and redcurrant;
  • maple holly;
  • meadow rank;
  • lungwort;
  • alder buckthorn;
  • two kinds of willow;
  • blueberries and lingonberries.

In addition to nectar, many types of honey plants that bloom in spring produce a huge amount of pollen, which contributes to the strengthening of bee brood. Herbaceous perennials provide insects with a supporting nectar and also help to increase the egg production of queens.

Summer honey plants

More than 100 species of honey plants blooming in summer in the region provide bees with the main nectar.

From the first days of June in Bashkiria, white clover begins to bloom, after which linden blossoms. A large bribe is given to insects by plants that begin to bloom in the second half of summer.

Commercial honey plants of the summer period in Bashkiria include:

  • creeping clover;
  • May wild rose;
  • Siberian hogweed;
  • common gout;
  • mouse peas;
  • sedum purple;
  • common blackhead;
  • little-leaved linden;
  • east svebriga;
  • Ivan-tea;
  • white clover;
  • five-lobed motherwort.

Autumn honey plants

In early autumn, the region also has enough melliferous plants that provide bees with an additional bribe. Flowering plants no longer produce much nectar, but it is enough for insects to keep the family in good condition.

The following crops belong to early autumn honey plants:

  • common chicory;
  • hiccup grey;
  • three-part sequence;
  • yarrow;
  • curly thistle.

Which Bashkir honey is the best

There are several types of Bashkir honey, and it is impossible to say which one is better, as each variety has its own unique taste and beneficial properties.

The main types of honey produced in Bashkiria include:

  • Lime. This variety belongs to the elite, it is characterized by a fine-grained texture and a delicate delicate aroma of linden flowers. Freshly pumped honey is colorless, as it crystallizes it becomes white with a golden hue. It contains up to 37% glucose and 40% fructose.
  • Steppe. This honey is considered polyfloral, as it is collected from different plants during their flowering period. The product has useful properties due to medicinal herbs, the nectar from which insects collect. Its color varies from whitish to golden amber. The composition of the steppe variety contains a large number of microelements and amino acids, due to which it stimulates all physiological processes in the human body.
  • Composite floral. This variety of honey is harvested by bees from early spring to the first half of autumn. Dozens of species of mountain, forest and meadow plants are responsible for the unique bouquet of aroma. The color palette of the product is diverse - from almost white to dark brown. This variety is distinguished by high nutritional and medicinal properties.
  • Buckwheat. Nectar is collected from flowering buckwheat, honey has a spicy taste and a slight bitterness. The color of the variety ranges from dark yellow to reddish and dark brown.

Problems of local beekeeping

The following factors hinder the development of beekeeping in Bashkiria:

  • uncontrolled deforestation in the region, which leads to a reduction in honey plants;
  • high prices for breeding material;
  • Field treatment with insecticides and environmental pollution;
  • a small number of bee products stores;
  • importation of breeding material from other regions into the region, which leads to crossing and loss of characteristics of the Bashkir breed of bees.


In recent years, the government of the republic began to pay more attention to the development of the industry in the region.As an advertisement for beekeeping, special fairs are held, where products are presented, novice beekeepers are allocated money for the purchase of breeding material and the necessary equipment.

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