Jump to content

Breeding black queens


Recommended Posts

My Italian strain are left 15 kg in mid to late April and are left for at least 3 1/2 months when most of them still have about half that left and there are generally no winter flows around here. I don't know how that compares with carniolan's.  I certainly have seen strains of Italians that bred and ate until they starved. If mine don't last 3 1/2 months on what they have got then they get a Darwin award.

  • Agree 2
  • Haha 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 103
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

I love that historical information David...didn't know Hastings was from Saskatchewan. And ironically Saskatchewan is also the birthplace of the new bee line now becoming popular...was able to try som

Hi Mark, It is hard with open matings. I struggle like you do with heaps of yellow mongrel drones haunting all the Drone Congregation areas in my mating area.  I am ok with the hybrid colonies that re

There is no real goals in mind. As I said I am impressed that on sunny days, even at a high of 9 degrees, we can see carniolans flying about.  They also seem very placid compared to italians.  Althoug

Posted Images

54 minutes ago, john berry said:

I would be happy to put some of my queens up against other strains. I would like the trial to be judged on production and temperament (including temperament during inclement weather) and overwintering. 

....and AFB resistance .........don't know how.......

Link to post
Share on other sites
21 hours ago, frazzledfozzle said:

 

Sunny days at 9 degrees there won’t be any nectar to collect so those bees are just going to consume more stores because they are active .

 

They are bringing in lots of pollen. I have a feeder full of sugar above them as they were both 5 frame nucs in February. Our school farm is right on the edge of town, as in the 2 ha block has townhouses on two sides, the school on another and open farmland to the north. Plenty of gardens to plunder. As I think I mentioned, our school gardens contain extensive lavender hedges and other flowers so they might get something.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, tommy dave said:

not related to the original question - but an idea on the business of bees front could be to talk to your students about propolis, propolis mats, and the various ways that the propolis revenue stream can work. Pretty sure there are vids on here, also @Trevor Gillbanks has a good video on the topic.

Maybe do the cinnamon and honey thing.  That came up. Also honey and ginger.

 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, john berry said:

I would be happy to put some of my queens up against other strains. Ideally such a test would take place in three or four different climate zones. I would like the trial to be judged on production and temperament (including temperament during inclement weather) and overwintering. Hell we could even send a few queens each to someone in Canada.
It would be a nice bit of science, give someone bragging rights and give the rest of us something to think about.

Would be great. Who pays? A trial that would supply meaningful data even in one place would be pricey, but 3 or 4 'climatic zones' would be well into 6 figures or maybe 7, especially if we include 2 very important selection criteria- hygienic behaviour and varroa tolerance.  Be prepared to have your illusion of distinct strains within our commercial bee stocks to be blown out of the water.  They just don't exist.  Any significant variation you see comes down to race. The other significant factors contributing to colony performance are the Queens physiological quality(how well she was reared), and how well the Queen was mated.  You are fooling yourself if you think that  somehow selecting a handful of naturally mated  breeders each season has given yourself some unique strain, especially now that everyone is everywhere- accept it, you are part of the melting pot. Over the years, I have looked at bees from every part of NZ, and there isn't a lot of variation.  Very yellow bees are very Italian, as the bees darken with hybridisation, their behaviour becomes more variable but generally intermediate,  and as you approach pure Carniolan, they behave generally like Carniolans, and if we could could find some pure mellifera, they would behave like mellifera. As for Canada, thousands of Italian type Queens have already been sent to Canada in the past- the trial is complete and conclusions drawn.

  • Good Info 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, David Yanke said:

  Fact for the day- Carnica winter on far less stores than Italian type bees.

 

We have broodless periods in most of our hives at some point during winter I think that is more important than thriftiness.

Edited by Trevor Gillbanks
Spelling Broodless
Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree that bloodlines are getting swamped and that's one of the reasons I want to test mine against someone else's before they disappear completely. Testing everything to the nth degree would cost a lot of money but seeing which hives produce the most honey could be done for very little . I was thinking more along the lines of swapping queens between beekeepers. I might even buy a few queens myself and run my own trials. Properly run trials are something that seems to be getting rarer and rarer amongst New Zealand beekeepers and all of time I'm hearing things like, I did this and it was fantastic or I used X on my hives and got my best crop ever but you hardly ever hear I tested X on randomised hives and they were 20% better\worse.
One example would be running hives in single or double brood boxes. I did extensive testing and found no advantage in the single brood box and lots of disadvantages. That doesn't mean that someone else can't make it work or that it is not better in other areas but unless you trial things properly you will never know.

  • Like 1
  • Agree 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
28 minutes ago, john berry said:

I agree that bloodlines are getting swamped and that's one of the reasons I want to test mine against someone else's before they disappear completely. Testing everything to the nth degree would cost a lot of money but seeing which hives produce the most honey could be done for very little . I was thinking more along the lines of swapping queens between beekeepers. I might even buy a few queens myself and run my own trials. Properly run trials are something that seems to be getting rarer and rarer amongst New Zealand beekeepers and all of time I'm hearing things like, I did this and it was fantastic or I used X on my hives and got my best crop ever but you hardly ever hear I tested X on randomised hives and they were 20% better\worse.
One example would be running hives in single or double brood boxes. I did extensive testing and found no advantage in the single brood box and lots of disadvantages. That doesn't mean that someone else can't make it work or that it is not better in other areas but unless you trial things properly you will never know.

I would love to swap Queens, and @frazzledfozzle that goes for you as well, but I understand if you don't want my bees in your area.

Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, David Yanke said:

I would love to swap Queens, and @frazzledfozzle that goes for you as well, but I understand if you don't want my bees in your area.

 

Thanks David but I really don’t want to go to the dark side. ?

i just feel it’s important to try and keep whatever we have here in this area as true to it’s past as possible.

which is not to say carnies are inferior or anything like that it’s just that I like what we have. They won’t suit everybody and every condition but I like them and a lot of care has gone into selecting them. 

What I really enjoy is the debate and the info around all thing bees particularly queens and your participation in the forum has been invaluable to me.

i still don’t agree that the carnie importation was a good thing but I would defend your right to do it if you have followed the processes required at the time.

we are fortunate in our area because all the queen rearers and most of the commercial have stuck with the Italian type bee so we aren’t fighting a big influx of dark bees. 

Im glad I don’t have any mating yards around @yesbut !

 

  • Like 2
  • Agree 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

i don't think i've ever put down carnis on this forum. but i believe that their qualities are a result of selection and controlled mating, not a racial superiority as such. 

i believe we would be in "open mating haven" without them and i own up to that comment.

for someone like me who relys on open mating, carnis are the out. and i see a loss in diversity in that.

i wouldn't have a problem to switch to carnies if my neighbors would. in fact i have given carnies a go here and they did well.

but it didn't feel right to go to the dark side in their "territory".

also i would be in the same position to rely on buying breeders to control the temper of my bees.

i say what i think. if this is disturbing someone, i'm sorry about this, but i'm just and ordinary beekeeper. so who cares what i think anyway?

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

Lol

Ive got a site of Dave's Bees that I leave alone 
Got them off Jared and Bex
They are no longer all black Queens but a few are
This site is in soft country near Reporoa
There is a good dose of Carni through the rest of my Bees but last season saw a resurgence of yellow somehow that pushed back.
I had a very good dark tipped yellow Breeder that along with a daughter accounted for most of my Queen sales and own Autumn splits

Id swap a few Queens with someone but will add that some of my country is severe

Link to post
Share on other sites
36 minutes ago, Philbee said:

Lol

Ive got a site of Dave's Bees that I leave alone 
Got them off Jared and Bex
They are no longer all black Queens but a few are
This site is in soft country near Reporoa
There is a good dose of Carni through the rest of my Bees but last season saw a resurgence of yellow somehow that pushed back.
I had a very good dark tipped yellow Breeder that along with a daughter accounted for most of my Queen sales and own Autumn splits

Id swap a few Queens with someone but will add that some of my country is severe

I had an ulterior motive with my offer to swap Queens with John and @frazzledfozzle, I want to get my hands on as much good yellow stock as I can, and I know John's is as good as it gets, and I've heard that fozzle's stock isn't that shabby either.  I am establishing a yellow population again, and I want to bring in as much material from as many places as possible.  

The aim is to have this yellow population sit alongside the carni's, and I will produce F1 Instrumentally Inseminated daughters by crossing these, and offering these potential breeders for sale, Trials over the last 2 seasons has shown daughters from these F1's to be very grunty  production Queen's. @beecavalier remember 'Starline' and 'Midnite' Queens.

Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, David Yanke said:

I had an ulterior motive with my offer to swap Queens with John and @frazzledfozzle, I want to get my hands on as much good yellow stock as I can, and I know John's is as good as it gets, and I've heard that fozzle's stock isn't that shabby either.  I am establishing a yellow population again, and I want to bring in as much material from as many places as possible.  

The aim is to have this yellow population sit alongside the carni's, and I will produce F1 Instrumentally Inseminated daughters by crossing these, and offering these potential breeders for sale, Trials over the last 2 seasons has shown daughters from these F1's to be very grunty  production Queen's. @beecavalier remember 'Starline' and 'Midnite' Queens.

Thats cool, However Id still swap Queens with someone
I have forward repeat orders from people that have said the same thing "Those are tough Queens Phil"

Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, David Yanke said:

I had an ulterior motive with my offer to swap Queens with John and @frazzledfozzle, I want to get my hands on as much good yellow stock as I can, and I know John's is as good as it gets, and I've heard that fozzle's stock isn't that shabby either.  I am establishing a yellow population again, and I want to bring in as much material from as many places as possible.  

The aim is to have this yellow population sit alongside the carni's, and I will produce F1 Instrumentally Inseminated daughters by crossing these, and offering these potential breeders for sale, Trials over the last 2 seasons has shown daughters from these F1's to be very grunty  production Queen's. @beecavalier remember 'Starline' and 'Midnite' Queens.

 

How did their daughters go? Any noticeable changes in productivity/temperament etc? I know that the F2s can be a lottery in other breeds.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, Markypoo said:

 

How did their daughters go? Any noticeable changes in productivity/temperament etc? I know that the F2s can be a lottery in other breeds.

 

This is an image of an F1 Queen.  She is the daughter of an Italian Breeder inseminated with carnica semen.  She is 50% Italian and 50% Carniolan.  The reciprocal cross, a carnica breeder inseminated with Italian semen looks exactly the same.  The workers around her are not hers, they are a mixture of F1 and F2 workers.  The breeders that would be offered for sale would either be Carniolan Virgins inseminated with pooled Italian semen, or the other way around, but daughters that would be reared from them would all look exactly, and uniformly like the Queen in the pic.  What the colonies would be like depends on how they mate.  If they mate yellow, then most people would think they were Italian, and if they mated Carniolan then they would look like the darkest workers in the pic. Their behaviour is generally intermediate, and because we are playing on heterosis to turbo charge their behaviour, they do have a bit of an edge to them, but rarely nasty.  I never wear gloves morning, noon, or late evening , and on good days, rarely a veil.  When the Carniolan material was first brought in there was a mixing of VERY unrelated genetic material, and there were some particularly nasty hybrid as a result from extreme heterosis, but the old genetic melting pot over the last decade has gone from a boil to a simmer, and you never/rarely see those extremes anymore. The theory behind this hybrid  program is that you take two relatively unrelated populations that are being maintained and improved, and you cross them to use heterosis to increase the productive potential of their offspring.  So not only do you get Queens that are more productive than the best parents of either line, but you help boost variation of the commercial bee stocks in general as these Queens get distributed throughout the industry.  

KiwiCross Queen 1.JPG

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

I think it's a lot of what you know is what you like.

In the last few years I've ended up with some tigers and they have all been hot firey son's of a female dogs to work.

I like my queens because they suit me I don't use a smoker most sites are a fire risk waiting to happen.

They over winter on there own feed quite well and give me as much honey and bees as the grumpy ones I've keeped to see how they went but got the chop before winter.

The farmers could not go close to the hives without getting stung.

We are lucky to have some very isalated sites where we full with our drone brood but can't keep out the odd rogue as more people try the dark bees.

It's a shame the crosses can be so hot the pure carny gets blamed for the half breed muts out there but without out the carnys I believe we would have still got on fine

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am in a odd situation because I have to have carnies at school. The BOT sets the rules and they want carnies over italians. The principal is a beekeeper and likes them so I guess he convinced them that they were ideal for school. I also think that there are carnies already being run near my home as the workers have gotten very dark. At home there is a distinct difference between my  hives. The original, currently being run by a supercedure queen from the nuc I got off Glynn in October last year is quite golden. The grandaughter's hive, that I made using a walkaway split for her is darker. I then used eggs from this hive to make a queen using the Alley method. They are even darker. I will see if I can find photos. 

The beeks on staff reckon there are a few apiaries with carnies around town so it is possible.

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

×
×
  • Create New...