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Author Topic: Bee genetic makeup  (Read 965 times)
VolunteerK9
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« on: August 17, 2010, 12:51:36 PM »

Which plays more of a role in the genetic makeup of the hive? The queen or drones that shes mated with? Or is it a 50-50 mixture of the two?
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fermentedhiker
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« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2010, 01:39:59 PM »

It depend on how you mean genetic makeup.  If you are referring to the workers only then 50/50 would express it alright. If you mean the hive in it's entirety then the queen has a larger influence because the drones come from only her genetic material. 

Is that what you were looking for?
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VolunteerK9
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« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2010, 02:34:32 PM »

I Have 7 hives now. Some are Italians from packages, 2 are from feral swarms and the others are a Carni/Italian mix. When a queen does her mating flight with the drones, I'm satisfied that it isn't necessarily her specific drones that she mates with. May be a stupid question but was just curious on whose genetics were dominant (if any) between the queen and drone. It doesnt matter to me, but basically my hives are just now mutts correct?
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RayMarler
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« Reply #3 on: August 17, 2010, 07:15:11 PM »

Glenn Apiaries has a page of Honeybee Genetics
http://www.glenn-apiaries.com/principles.html

The queen is a cross from her mother and multiple fathers.
The drones are pure for the mother (unfertilized egg).
The drones will be as pure of stain as the mother was?
I've seen hives with pure looking ITA drones, pure looking NWC drones, and I've seen hives with crossed up drones between the ITA and NWC.
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caticind
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« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2010, 08:18:44 PM »

Do you know of other apiaries in the area besides yours?  What types of bees are kept there?

There are more feral hives out there even if no other managed.  New queens from your hives will go out to a drone congregation area well away from your apiary...there could be drones from 10 miles away there.  With just 7 hives, your drones make up a small fraction of the drones in the local DCAs, so odds are very good that your queens won't mate with drones from any of your hives.

As said below, once you have a mated queen, her female offspring will be be 50/50 her genetics and those of the drones she mated with.  So all of the workers share half of their genes with the queen, but there are several fathers - like a family of half-siblings.  The drones have no father, all of their genes come directly from the queen.

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The bees would be no help; they would tumble over each other like golden babies and thrum wordlessly on the subjects of queens and sex and pollen-gluey feet. -Palimpsest
deknow
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« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2010, 10:51:17 PM »

the queen is responsible for 50% of the genes in all workers (and queens) from eggs she laid.

each drone is responsible for 50% of the genes in all workers (and queens) from eggs fertilized by his sperm.

.....but it gets more interesting:

each queen or worker egg has a fairly unique combination of genes from the queen (each egg has a "different 50%).

each drone is like a "flying sperm" from the queen that produced him...he (like the queen's egg) has a fairly unique combination of genes from his queen mother (he has only 50%)...but, each of that drone's sperm is identical.

it is a weird combination of consistency and variability.

deknow
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VolunteerK9
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« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2010, 01:51:15 PM »

So basically, if I choose to requeen with all Russian's next year, I'm not necessarily going to have a true Russian hive then. Would it be feasible to saturate the area with drones then? Or would this just be overkill and really unnecessary?
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beee farmer
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« Reply #7 on: August 21, 2010, 07:59:33 PM »

Thats very possiable.  Many queen breedeers locate their yards far from any other beekeepers and set up several "drone" hives, hives with only drone foundation. This greatly reduces the influence of feral drones in the area polluting the mated queens.
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caticind
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« Reply #8 on: August 21, 2010, 09:03:42 PM »

You might be able to saturate, but the likelihood of success depends on how many feral and managed hives are already in the area around you.

If you make up some Russian drone hives, make sure they are descended from unrelated queens of yours.  If you manage to dominate the local drone-space, you don't want to accidentally inbreed all of your colonies because all your drone-mothers are sisters.
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The bees would be no help; they would tumble over each other like golden babies and thrum wordlessly on the subjects of queens and sex and pollen-gluey feet. -Palimpsest
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