Skip to main content

30% Off New Releases: Explore the List

Harvard University Press - home
Asian Honey Bees

Asian Honey Bees

Biology, Conservation, and Human Interactions

Benjamin P. Oldroyd, Siriwat Wongsiri

ISBN 9780674021945

Publication date: 05/15/2006

The familiar European hive bee, Apis mellifera, has long dominated honey bee research. But in the last 15 years, teams in China, Japan, Malaysia, and Thailand began to shift focus to the indigenous Asian honey bees. Benjamin Oldroyd, well known for his work on the genetics and evolution of worker sterility, has teamed with Siriwat Wongsiri, a pioneer of the study of bees in Thailand, to provide a comparative work synthesizing the rapidly expanding Asian honey bee literature. After introducing the species, the authors review evolution and speciation, division of labor, communication, and nest defense. They underscore the pressures colonies face from pathogens, parasites, and predators--including man--and detail the long and amazing history of the honey hunt. This book provides a cornerstone for future investigations on these species, insights into the evolution across species, and a direction for conservation efforts to protect these keystone species of Asia's tropical forests.


  • Asian Honey Bees goes well beyond its immediate subject, using the diverse and fascinating species of honey bees to explore current issues in evolutionary biology and illustrate economic and cultural interactions between humans and nature. Oldroyd and Wongsiri have produced a thorough, timely, and well-organized book, clearly written, fluid, and engaging to read. This is an important, thought-provoking contribution that will have considerable impact on many sectors, including basic studies of social insect biology, economic development of Asian beekeeping, and the conservation of one of our planet's most important group of organisms, the honey bees.

    —Mark L. Winston, Fellow, Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue, and Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Simon Fraser University


  • Benjamin P. Oldroyd is Associate Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of Sydney.
  • Siriwat Wongsiri is Professor of Science at Chulalongkorn University (Thailand).
  • Thomas D. Seeley is Professor of Biology, Cornell University.

Book Details

  • 360 pages
  • 0-15/16 x 6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press
  • Foreword by Thomas D. Seeley