APICO is a game that’s all about beekeeping. You raise bees, then breed them to create hybrid bees — and maybe even get a new mutation while you’re at it. Of course, beekeeping in APICO isn’t simple; there’s quite a lot to know to get your beekeeping project off the ground.

Thankfully, I’ve created a robust guide to everything you’ll need to know to get your bee breeding project off the ground.

The basics


First off, you can breed bees in a basic hive, but you can’t create hybrid bees that way. So if you want to get mutating, you’re going to need to build an Apiary. A Basic Apiary can be crafted at a workbench using these materials:

  • 10 Honeycomb
  • 10 Wood Planks
  • 10 Logs

An Advanced Apiary can be crafted at a Workbench from these materials:

  • 10 Honeycomb
  • 10 Infused Wood Planks
  • 10 Logs

To create Infused Wood Planks, you’ll need to tap trees for resin, collect the resin in a Wooden Canister, then combine the Resin and Wooden Planks in an Infuser. Of course, you really just need the Basic Apiary for this (the Advanced Apiary can hold twice as many Wooden Frames).

When you click on an Apiary, you should see this view:


There are two bee icons in the upper left-hand side. Those are your input slots. When you put bees into those slots, they will merge into a queen (more on that later). The slots in the middle are spaces for Wooden Frames. By placing those into the Apiary, you will be collecting resources from the bees.

The three slots on the right-hand side are the output slots, which is where the queen’s offspring will go once it’s produced. The six slots on the bottom are just storage slots. This is a convenient place to put your extra bees while you’re trying for a specific type.

So how do you create crossbreeds?

APICO - Bee Breeding

Two bees of the same type will merge into a queen of that type, while two queens of different types will merge into a hybrid queen. For example, placing two Common Bees in those slots will create a Common Queen, while placing one Common Bee and one Forest Bee will create a Forest-Common Queen or a Common-Forest Queen.

Note that hybrid queens aren’t guaranteed to produce mutated offspring. The Common-Forest Queen in the previous paragraph could possibly create a Common Bee, a Forest Bee, or a Common-Forest Bee. However, there’s a slight chance that the queen will produce mutated offspring — in this case, the Verdant Bee. Make sense?

Also, when a Wooden Frame is full, you’ll need to uncap it using an Uncapping Bench, during which it will produce Propolis. Once that’s done, you’ll need to take it to an Extractor. During this step, it should produce several different items, one of which is that particular bee’s “special produce.” The “special produce” is different for each bee.

Additionally, bees have different traits. The in-game help window actually explains that really well, so I’ll just leave that here:


Flowers with special effects

APICO - Flowers

Some flowers, when planted close to apiaries, will give your bees special effects. They might improve your queen’s lifespan, improve productivity, or even keep your bees awake longer into the night. If you want a complete guide to flowers (as well as information on how to breed all of them), here’s a pretty beefy guide that I wrote.

How many bee types are there?

There are 36 species of bee in APICO. Some of them can be found in the world, while others need to be bred. And some have really strange conditions before they’ll mutate. It will take you quite some time to collect all of them.

So here’s a list of all 36 bees and where you can find them. There’s a ton of info in this guide, so if you’re looking for something in particular, you can hit CTRL + F to search for it by name.

Tier 1 Bees

Common Bee

APICO - Common Bee

Scientific name: Apis Communia

Description: The “Common” Bee is found practically everywhere on the Archipelago. A generally friendly, dependable and well-rounded species, it forms the backbone of our modern apiculture.

Special produce: Bee Pollen

Where to find: Common Bees can be found in yellow hives throughout the game world.

Forest Bee

APICO - Forest Bee

Scientific name: Apis Silva

Description: Originally a marshland species, the “Forest” Bee has since migrated to lusher forests. It continues to build in trees — a survival trick originally used to protect the hive from swamp water.

Special produce: Sticky Pearl

Where to find: Forest Bees can be found in green hives, which are usually located in wooded areas.

Verge Bee

APICO - Verge Bee

Scientific name: Apis Paene

Description: Unlike its land-based cousins, the “Verge” Bee thrives in water. While other species might avoid inclement weather (such as rain), this species will continue to be active.

Special produce: Honeydew

Where to find: Verge Bees can be found in blue hives, which are generally located in water.

Uncommon Bee

APICO - Uncommon Bee

Scientific name: Apis Raris

Description: To the casual observer, Apis Raris is indistinguishable from the Common Bee. To learn’d scholars, differences in thorax patterns and wing vibrations signal the start of a new genetic patch for the Common Bee.

Special produce: Comb Fragment

Where to find: Uncommon Bees can usually be found by traveling east past the starting area. They will usually inhabit yellow hives that look extremely similar to the hives of Common Bees.

Tier 2 Bees

Verdant Bee

APICO - Verdant Bee

Scientific Name: Apis Floreo

Description: The “Verdant” Bee was the first domesticated bee species in the Archipelago — breeding the “Verdant” Bee is a common rite of passage for many new beekeepers starting their apiculture journey.

Special produce: Waxy Pearl

How to breed: Breeding a Common Bee with a Forest Bee has a small chance of producing a Verdant Bee. For reference:

  • Common Bee + Forest Bee = Verdant Bee

Vibrant Bee

APICO - Vibrant Bee

Scientific name: Apis Claris

Description: The “Vibrant” Bee has evolved a way to cool itself using water from the environment, allowing it to operate at a slightly higher metabolic rate than its “Common” cousins.

Special produce: Hivedust

How to breed: Breeding a Common Bee with a Verge Bee will sometimes produce a Vibrant Bee offspring. For reference:

  • Common Bee + Verge Bee = Vibrant Bee

Drowsy Bee

APICO - Drowsy Bee

Scientific name: Apis Somnolentus

Description: Many early Islanders thought this species was afraid of people, such are its secretive schedules. In fact, the “Drowsy” Bee is literally sleeping, restoring its energy for the cool hours of the day.

Special produce: Morningdew

How to breed: Breeding a Forest Bee and an Uncommon Bee will sometimes produce a Drowsy Bee as offspring. For reference:

  • Forest Bee + Uncommon Bee = Drowsy Bee

Misty Bee

APICO - Misty Bee

Scientific name: Apis Caliginosus

Description: In most land-based bees, rain, and even mist, can impede their ability to fly. Not so the “Misty” Bee, which has developed water-repellant bristles, allowing them to fly unimpeded by moisture.

Special produce: Shrouded Dye

How to breed: Breeding a Forest Bee with a Verge Bee will sometimes produce a Misty Bee as offspring. This must be done while it is raining. For reference:

  • Forest Bee + Verge Bee (while it’s raining) = Misty Bee

Dream Bee

APICO - Dream Bee

Scientific name: Apis Somnium

Description: Known as the Hivemother’s “little helpers,” this is an incredibly shy species that only emerges from hiding when all humans nearby are sleeping.

Special produce: Apise

How to breed: Breeding a Common Bee with an Uncommon Bee will sometimes produce a Dream Bee. This must be done while the player is sleeping. For reference:

  • Common Bee + Uncommon Bee (while the player is sleeping) = Dream Bee

Murky Bee

APICO - Murky Bee

Scientific name: Apis Caligo

Description: This aggressive, territorial species has long infested the swamps of the Archipelago and only the recent invention of smoke alchemy has allowed modern Islanders to traverse the region safely.

Special produce: Sticky Shard

Where to find: These bees can be found to the southeast in the swampland biome in pink hives. You will need a boat to reach this area, and you will also need a smoker with one of these flowers in it:

  • Honeyrose
  • Swarmwort
  • Beekeeper’s Delight

Muggy Bee

APICO - Muggy Bee

Scientific name: Apis Humidus

Description: Water bees typically favour freshwater, so this species has caused much debate within the academic community. No researcher has yet had the stomach (or wellies) to brave the swamps to find out for themselves.

Special produce: Clay Dust (note that in earlier versions of the game, this was Sticky Shard, but that must have been a mistake — it was eventually changed in a patch).

Where to find: These bees can be found to the southeast in the swampland biome in blue hives. You will need a boat to reach this area.

Glowing Bee

APICO - Glowing Bee

Scientific name: Apis Lumen

Description: A curiosity and a delight, even to more veteran researchers, Apis Lumen burn their honey to ensure its purity — presumably an evolutionary response to the impurities in their natural water supply.

Special produce: Glowing Dye

Where to find: Glowing Bees can be found in the swamplands in the southeastern portion of the map. Look for the dark blue beehives. You will need a boat to reach this area, and you will also need a smoker with Pondshine in order to interact with the bees.

Rocky Bee

APICO - Boulder

Scientific name: Apis Petra

Description: Apis Petra secretes a highly acidic saliva, which it uses to mulch out great warrens through bedrock. Curiously, however, they leave manufactured stone untouched — a relief to the homeowners of the Archipelago.

Special produce: Stone

Where to find: If you crack open a large boulder with a Stone Pickaxe, you should fine a Rocky Bee inside.

Tier 3 Bees

Regal Bee

APICO - Regal Bee

Scientific name: Apis Regalis

Description: A sovereign of apiculture, this bee of breeding can trace its roots back to the Origin of the Species. Rightfully superior, this species demands golden tribute from her subjects.

Special produce: Royal Jelly

How to breed: Breeding a Vibrant Bee with a Verdant Bee will sometimes produce a Regal Bee as offspring. This must be done with Goldenrod surrounding the apiary. For reference:

  • Vibrant Bee + Verdant Bee (with Goldenrod nearby) = Regal Bee

Worker Bee

APICO - Worker Bee

Scientific name: Apis Artifex

Description: The “Worker” Bee is a strong and gentle giant, and a critical part of modern industry. Without these thumb-sized behemoths, many of our modern comforts would only be the rarest of treats.

Special produce: Wax Canister

How to breed: You will need to breed a Vibrant Bee with either a Misty Bee or a Muggy Bee. These bees should be bred in an apiary that’s close to Honeybriar flowers. For reference:

  • Vibrant Bee + Misty Bee (with Honeybriar flowers nearby) = Worker Bee
  • Vibrant Bee + Murky Bee (with Honeybriar flowers nearby) = Worker Bee

Stubborn Bee

APICO - Stubborn Bee

Scientific name: Apis Pertinax

Description: It is unknown why this species is so exceptionally sensitive to light and temperature. Only active in the time between days, the “Stubborn” Bee spends the rest of its time in protective cells within the hive.

Special produce: Wax Shard

How to breed: You will need to breed a Drowsy Bee with a Murky Bee. You’ll want to do this close to either dusk or dawn. For reference:

  • Drowsy Bee + Murky Bee (at either dusk or dawn) = Stubborn Bee

Domesticated Bee

APICO - Domesticated Bee

Scientific name: Apis Domesticas

Description: Decades of extensive breeding by careless apiarists have resulted in a species entirely unsuited to the Archipelago. Rather than allow them to suffer, many kind families adopt them as house pets.

Special produce: Glossy Pearl

How to breed: Breeding a Verdant Bee with a Drowsy Bee will sometimes produce a Domesticated Bee as offspring. You will want to put your apiary inside a closed-off house (having doors on that house is okay). For reference:

  • Verdant Bee + Drowsy Bee (while inside a house) = Domesticated Bee

Hermit Bee

APICO - Hermit Bee

Scientific name: Apis Eremita

Description: It is said in ages past, the Hivemother blessed the struggling islanders of the Archipelago with the Bee, heralding a new era of prosperity and peace. The “Hermit” Bee is an exceptionally rare example of these prehistoric bees.

Special produce: Calidus

How to breed: Breeding a Misty Bee with either a Murky Bee or a Muggy Bee will occasionally produce a Hermit Bee as offspring. The apiary should be isolated from other bees. For reference:

  • Misty Bee + Murky Bee (with apiary isolated from other bees) = Hermit Bee
  • Misty Bee + Muggy Bee (with apiary isolated from other bees) = Hermit Bee

Twilight Bee

APICO - Twilight Bee

Scientific name: Apis Diluculum

Description: Said to be Heralds of the Hivemother, these bees are half-remembered myths found only in children’s stories. If these bees were to exist, and be proven so, the implications would be… divine.

Special produce: Sparkling Dye

How to breed: Breeding a Dream Bee with either a Drowsy Bee or a Glowing Bee will sometimes produce a Twilight Bee. The breeding must happen during the twilight hours for this to work. For reference:

  • Dream Bee + Drowsy Bee (during the twilight hours of dawn) = Twilight Bee
  • Dream Bee + Glowing Bee (during the twilight hours of dawn) = Twilight Bee

Note: I found this one to be incredibly difficult, because the queen needs to end its lifecycle during the dawn hours. Even if you time things out perfectly, it often rains, which changes up the bee’s cycle and can lead to them ending on the wrong part of the day. The way I finally got this to work was to just set up six apiaries, and stagger the breeding between all six of them until eventually, through the sheer force of will, I was able to produce a Twilight Bee. The good news is that once you have a couple Twilight Bees, they seem to reproduce pretty quickly.

Frosty Bee

APICO - Frozen Bee

Scientific name: Apis Frigidus

Description: An unfortunate mutation caused a dramatic increase in the amount of heat produced by this species’ metabolism. Beekeepers will often keep them close to hand, in some cases literally, to protect from frostbite.

Special produce: Icy Shard

Where to find: In the southwestern region of your map you’ll find a tundra area. You will need a boat to reach this area. Frosty Bees can be found inside white hives in the tundra.

Fiery Bee

APICO - Fiery Bee

Scientific name: Apis Ignis

Description: While some radical scholars have proposed they burn honey for warmth — in a similar manner to Apis Lumen — field observations indicate they maintain optimal ambient temperature by the sheer volume of their industry.

Special produce: Charred Pearl

Where to find: Fiery Bees can be found in the tundra area in the southwestern portion of the map. You will need to have a boat to get here. Also, you’ll need to have a smoker with one of these flowers in it:

  • Hivesbane
  • Honeydrop

Their hives are a reddish orange color.

Jurassic Bee

APICO - Jurassic Bee

Scientific name: Apis Praeterita

Description: Despite recovering several prehistoric specimens from archaeological digs, very little is known about Apis Praeterita. It is highly likely that this species is now extinct and lost to us.

Special produce: Roburrum

Where to find: Jurassic Bees are super, super rare. Their hive can be found inside an ice block that’s in the tundra area in the southwest portion of your map. You will need a heater in order to melt the ice block (the heater must also have fuel in it).

Tier 4

Crystal Bee

APICO - Crystal Bee

Scientific name: Apis Crystallum

Description: Instead of honey, Crystal Hives form seeds of Honeycore. During flight, tiny crystals shake loose from their wings and take root in the snow — it is unknown if intentional, or a side effect of some other more complex process.

Special produce: Honeycore Shard

How to breed: Breeding a Frosty Bee with a Regal Bee will occasionally produce a Crystal Bee. The apiary must be near Honeycore (which can be found in the tundra area), and it must be snowing. For reference:

  • Frosty Bee + Regal Bee (near Honeycore while it’s snowing) = Crystal Bee

Ancient Bee

APICO - Ancient Bee

Scientific name: Apis Vetus

Description: A single hive is known to exist — hidden in the Apicademy campus gardens. A traditional sigil of this august University, it is suspected that many bees have outlived generations of scholars.

Special produce: Temperus

How to breed: Breeding a Worker Bee and a Twilight Bee will sometimes produce an Ancient Bee as offspring. The queen must have her lifespan pushed to the absolute maximum. For reference:

  • Worker Bee + Twilight Bee (with maximum lifespan) = Ancient Bee

Note: This one was a little tricky. Originally, I thought I could just set up an apiary near a lot of goldenrod, which increases the lifespan of any queens nearby, but that wasn’t quite enough.

Instead, I had to breed Worker Bees and Twilight Bees (which generally have a lifespan rating of 4) with bees with a lifespan rating of 6 (Regal Bees and Jurassic Bees should work). When you breed, for example, a Twilight-Jurassic queen, the offspring will be either a Twilight Bee, a Jurassic Bee, a Twilight-Jurassic Bee, or a Jurassic-Twilight Bee. The lifespan rating can be anywhere between 4 and 6, but it will generally be a little higher if you have goldenrod near the apiary/swarmer (using a swarmer is much more efficient).

If you’re not sure how to see a bee’s lifespan rating, you simply mouse over the bee and press the Shift key. This will bring up its stats. The stat you’re looking for is marked with an L (for Lifespan).

APICO - Lifespan

Once you have a Twilight Bee and a Worker Bee that both have lifespan ratings of 6+, breed them in a swarmer and cross your fingers. If you don’t strike gold the first time, run the whole experiment again and hope for better luck. Eventually you should pop the correct combo.

I’ve seen some guides say that you need to have your Twilight Bee and Worker Bee both have Lifespan ratings of 7 to make this work, but I was able to create an Ancient Bee with both my Twilight Bee and Worker Bee at 6+ when surrounded by goldenrod.

Bohemian Bee

APICO - Bohemian Bee

Scientific name: Apis Recumbitus

Description: This species exhibits a curious behaviour trait when placed near multiple flowers; multiple nectars are presented to the Hive, who select favourites and eject the rest. It is currently unknown what they are looking for.

Special produce: Random Seeds

How to breed: Breeding a Domesticated Bee with a Stubborn Bee will sometimes produce a Bohemian Bee as offspring. The apiary must be surrounded by all 13 types of flower (you can read my flower breeding guide to learn how to get all 13 flower types). For reference:

  • Domesticated Bee + Stubborn Bee (while surrounded by all 13 flower types) = Bohemian Bee

Note: I’ve seen some guides say that you can get this with just 10 flower types. However, I wasn’t able to get a Bohemian Bee until I had an apiary surrounded by all 13 flower types. And believe me, I tried…

APICO - Nearby Flowers

Also, you can see which flowers are within range of an apiary by looking at the icons on the right-hand side of the apiary menu. This can only be done while bees are actively breeding, though.

Prolific Bee

APICO - Prolific Bee

Scientific name: Apis Multis

Description: The Prolific Bee cannot stand to be on its own and craves the company of the wider community. After previous catastrophic overpopulation, the Academy has politely suggested more controlled colony sizes.

Special produce: Glorious Pearl

How to breed: Breeding a Domesticated Bee with a Hermit Bee will sometimes produce a Prolific Bee as offspring. Must be surrounded by other working hives. For reference:

  • Domesticated Bee + Hermit Bee (while surrounded by other working hives) = Prolific Bee

For this one, I just set up a whole bunch of basic hives and worked on breeding Common Bees in them, then I put a couple apiaries smack in the center of all that where I bred Domesticated and Hermit Bees. It took a bit of work, but I finally was able to get some Prolific Bees in the end.

Industrial Bee

Scientific name: Apis Magnarum

How to breed: Breeding a Regal Bee with a Worker Bee will sometimes produce an Industrial Bee as offspring. Must be near Honeycore technology. For reference:

  • Regal Bee + Worker Bee (while near Honeycore technology) = Industrial Bee

Chaotic Bee

Scientific name: Apis Vesania

How to breed: Breeding a Hermit Bee with a Twilight Bee has a small chance of producing a Chaotic Bee as offspring. Bees must be extremely unstable. For reference:

  • Hermit Bee + Twilight Bee (while extremely unstable) = Chaotic Bee

Arctic Bee

Scientific name: Apis Glacialis

How to breed: Breeding a Frosty Bee with a Stubborn Bee has a small chance of producing an Arctic Bee as offspring. Bees must be in an extremely cold climate. For reference:

  • Frosty Bee + Stubborn Bee (while extremely cold) = Arctic Bee

Blazing Bee

Scientific name: Apis Incandes

How to breed: Breeding a Fiery Bee with a Stubborn Bee has a small chance to produce a Blazing Bee as offspring. Breeding must happen in an extremely hot climate. For reference:

  • Fiery Bee + Stubborn Bee (while extremely hot) = Blazing Bee

Empress Bee

Scientific name: Apis Imperator

How to breed: Breeding a Fiery Bee with a Regal Bee has a small chance of producing an Empress Bee as offspring. Must be near at least three smokers producing different scents simultaneously. For reference:

  • Fiery Bee + Regal Bee (with at least three active smokers with different scents nearby) = Empress Bee

Melodic Bee

Scientific name: Apis Harmonia

How to breed: Breeding a Domesticated Bee with a Twilight Bee will sometimes produce a Melodic Bee as offspring. Must be near a jukebox. For reference:

  • Domesticated Bee + Twilight Bee (while near a jukebox) = Melodic Bee

Lightning Bee

Scientific name: Apis Fulmen

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5 months ago

Wow awesome job on this bee hybrid guide! everything made complete sense and I was able to follow and understand how to progress quickly. Thank you for taking the time to post this.

5 months ago

You mention needing honeybriar around the hives of twilight + worker bees to produce Ancient bees. Don’t you mean Goldenrod? Honeybriar increases productivity, where Goldenrod increases lifespan.

5 months ago
Reply to  Josh Wirtanen

Thank you for the article! p.s. – I think you can also use the Glitched Queen to push the Twilight and Worker bee lifespans up.

Last edited 5 months ago by Amy
4 months ago

awesome job!
just a little mistake.
the second way to produce Worker Bee should be Vibrant Bee + Muggy Bee, not Murky Bee (at least in 1.4)

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