Until mid 1800 Apis mellifera mellifera, the black bee, was the absolutely dominant bee in Sweden. It is well adopted for the climate with long winters. It can fly at somewhat lower temperature and uses less food during the winter than other races. Unfortunately, a massive import of Ligustica and Carnica led to hybridisation of the black bee. The hybrid between mellifera and Carnica does not differ much in colour from a pure Mellifera but has a temperament that is bad. It was therefore said that the Mellifera was an aggressive bee and it lost its popularity. In 1990 a project started for saving the Mellifera bee. A message was sent to the bee-keepers asking them if they believed they had pure Mellifera in their hives. Around 150 persons gave a positive answer and were asked to send samples of their bees. By using morphological values 10 colonies were considered pure. Over the years some more colonies were found that seem to be pure. By using mtDNA we can see 30 different lines. The main characteristics used in the selection are colour and wing pattern where we look mostly at cubital index and the discoidal angle. To secure pure mating we have some islands and remote areas where only Mellifera exists but apart from that artificial insemination is also used. The Swedish government and WWF supported the project at the start but without the efforts from enthusiastic bee-keepers it would have failed.