He was born at Geneva, of a family which had already made its mark in the literary and scientific world: his great-aunt, Marie Huber, was known as a voluminous writer on religious and theological subjects, and as the translator and epitomizer of The Spectator (Amsterdam, 3 vols., 1753); and his father Jean Huber (1721–1786), who had served for many years as a soldier, was a prominent member of the coterie at Ferney, distinguishing himself by his Observations sur le vol des oiseaux (Geneva, 1784).
François Huber was only fifteen years old when he began to suffer from a disease which gradually resulted in total blindness; but, with the aid of his wife, Marie Aimée Lullin, and of his servant, François Burnens, he was able to carry out investigations that laid the foundations of a scientific knowledge of the life history of the honey bee. His Nouvelles Observations sur les Abeilles was published at Geneva in 1792 (Eng. trans., 1806). A second volume of work published along with the first came out in 1814 which covered many more subjects including the construction of comb and experiments on the respiration of bees.
He assisted Jean Senebier in his Mém. sur l'influence de l'air, etc., dans la germination (Geneva, 1800); and he also wrote "Mém. sur l'origine de la cire" (Bibliothèque britannique, tome xxv.), a "Lettre a M. Pictet sur certains dangers que courent les abeilles" (Bib. brit. xxvii), and "Nouvelles Observ. rel. au sphinx Atropos" (Bib. brit. xxvii). He died at Lausanne on 22 December 1831. A. P. de Candolle gave his name to a genus of Brazilian trees—Huberia burma.
- Sir William Justine, Bees: Comprehending the uses and economical management of the honey-bee of Britain and other countries, together with the known wild species, publ. W.H. Lizars, 1859, frontispiece
- Sketch of the Life of Francis Huber Popular Science Monthly Volume 6 February 1875
- O'Brian, Patrick. "Post Captain," Aubrey/Maturin Series, Norton Publishing, pp. 436.
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Huber, François". Encyclopædia Britannica. 13 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 845.
- Works by François Huber at Project Gutenberg
- Works by or about François Huber at Internet Archive
- The full text of Volume I of 'New Observations on the Natural History of Bees' by François Huber 1806 English edition
- Complete scan of Volume I of 'New Observations on the Natural History of Bees' by François Huber 1806 English edition
- The Beekeeper's Pupil, by Sara George. A fictional account of M. Huber's research in the form of a diary by his manservant-turned-assistant.
- Sketch of the Life of Francis Huber