Genetic variation of Apis mellifera from Serbia inferred from mitochondrial analysis
Two honeybee subspecies inhabit Serbia; Apis mellifera carnica and A. m. macedonica. Both belong to eastern Mediterranean (C) evolutionary lineage. Furthermore three Serbian honeybee ecotypes restricted to particular regions, were defined through morphometry and cytogenetic analyses. In this study, mitochondrial data have been used to analyze the molecular diversity of the honeybee population from Serbia. Seven haplotypes of the C evolutionary lineage have been found, two of them are newly described (C2o and C2p) and restricted to two regions, which ultimately increased the number of haplotypes found in this lineage. Comparisons with surrounding honeybee populations suggest a hybrid situation between A. m. carnica and A. m. macedonica and also introgression from A. m. ligustica. The results should be considered when dealing with future conservation strategies, and for pathogen-parasite-tolerant breeding programs.