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Author Topic: Limited genetics in races  (Read 1519 times)
stoverjeff
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Location: Leaburg, OR


« on: December 26, 2010, 02:02:13 PM »

I'm new to beekeeping.  In fact I don't have any bees yet, but plan of getting several hives going this spring (2011).  I want to get started with some good bees and genetics, but I have a question about the genetics.
From what I've been reading here and elsewhere, it seems that there is a fairly limited gene pool.  I've also read about inbreeding and possible negative affects.

I want to start with a gentle race, possibly Carniolan.  I would also like to raise my own queen replacements.  So my question is this.  Would it be a good idea to purchase a couple of queens from different areas of the country and how many different "strains" within this particular race are there?  Also would there be an advantage to purchase queens that have been artificially inseminated rather than queens that have been allowed to wander on their mating flights?
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AllenF
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« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2010, 04:58:43 PM »

If it was up to me, stick with one breeder to start with until you get things going.   Then branch out the second and third year with bought queens from around the country.   But queens raised from your area may have a better chance of survival.  With breeds, I really don't think that matters much.   Most people are happy with what they have.
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Bee-Bop
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« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2010, 05:07:59 PM »

I wish it was as simple as saying " gentle race "

I believe all bees are gentle at times, and mean as H---- at other times, particularly weather, and my dumb careless actions.

As far as the gene pool, the Queen will fly up to about 5 miles to breed, the Drone will fly 3-5 miles to breed so you are taking in a radius of up to 8-10 miles, that area can contain numerous genes, fereal and domesticated. To raise your own Queens is easy, selecting whom she mates with is another story.

Here's a little info. on Drones
http://www.montybees.org.uk/

Wanting the best to start with is a great idea, however, I would start with a locally raised Nuc. for your first year,experience will help you improve for the future expansion.

Talk to your local beekeeper, join a bee club, the library has or can get books on beekeeping

Raising bees does require hands on work, so many newBees don't last into the 3'rd year, sorry to say.

Good Luck

Bee=Bop
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" If Your not part of the genetic solution of breeding mite-free bees, then You're part of the problem "
stoverjeff
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Location: Leaburg, OR


« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2010, 10:12:15 PM »

Thanks for the input.
Jeff
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fish_stix
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« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2010, 07:42:17 PM »

stoverjeff; the instrumentally inseminated queens are not usually used for your normal everyday hives. They are intended to be used as breeder queens, especially for the larger commercial operators and the queen/package business. It's not good to install a $100.00+ II queen and immediately have her killed or superseded, which happens pretty often when requeening. Buy production queens from a reputable, preferably local, source. For a beginning beek any of the common races of bees will work for you. I recommend Italians because they are generally gentle and easy to work, build fast and you can get some pretty good Varroa resistant bees (VSH). If you can find a VSH type Cordovan it helps because they're a lot easier to spot on the frames due to the yellow coloration. This early in the game it's useless to worry about inbreeding and other nonsense which is out of your control!
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stoverjeff
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« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2010, 11:10:27 PM »

Years ago when I had kids in 4H they had rabbits.  We got a little crazy with the breeding and brought in some rabbits from others parts of the country due to inbreeding.  Maybe I'm way to far ahead of the game right now.

I just want to get off on the right foot.  If it costs a little more to being with, well that's just a few bucks of inheritance spent on MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! evil
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fish_stix
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« Reply #6 on: December 28, 2010, 07:29:43 PM »

You get off on the right foot by purchasing quality packages or nucs from quality suppliers. Instrumentally inseminated queens are not going to help any inbreeding problems you perceive happening. Bees thrive on diversity and they get diversity from the queen mating with drones from many sources. You can spend 5 million bucks on a II queen and you'll be no better off than Joe, down the street, who raises his own queens and insures diversity by having drones available from many different lines of bees, including ferals. Bees have been raising their own queens for millions of years now; they pretty much have the inbreeding thing figured out if just left alone to their own devices.
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indypartridge
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« Reply #7 on: March 23, 2011, 08:02:20 AM »

Quote from: Bee-Bop
Wanting the best to start with is a great idea, however, I would start with a locally raised Nuc.

Great advice from Bee-Bop.

Quote
Talk to your local beekeeper, join a bee club

Yes. Get connected with local beekeepers:
http://www.orsba.org/htdocs/regionalbranch.php
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