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Comparing strains of bees whether they are different strains of New Zealand Italian or  carniolan and carniolan crosses cannot really be done with just a handful of hives. Any results would only be applicable to the area they were done in and really need to be done with hundreds of hives over several seasons. Even comparing the temperament of different strains needs to be done under varying honey flow and climatic conditions.

My final test for breeders after two years of production evaluation was to have them all on the same apiary and work them under sub optimal beekeeping conditions. It was surprising how often one or two hives that appeared perfect would spit the dummy when worked in a light evening drizzle. Constantly selecting your very best hives for breeders won't give you perfect hives but it will give you a constant improvement.

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This is one of the pure Carniolans I had before.

They are better than average but not as good as my best hives. Definitely slower building up when there was no natural or artificial stimulation and probably faster building than mine when there was n

Kill it Kill it 😄

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12 minutes ago, john berry said:

Constantly selecting your very best hives for breeders won't give you perfect hives but it will give you a constant improvement.

That's an interesting concept isn't it......indefinite improvement.....what would be the characteristics of a bee that could not be improved on ?

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5 hours ago, Alastair said:

Gotta say Ned, when we worked your hives together last week, I was impressed with what nice bees they were, and also how much honey they have gathered thus far. 🙂

Thank you Alastair and thank you for your hard work on discovering those neglected AFB hives that put us all in danger. I hope you find them all. Good luck!

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I have a nasty hive  in my orchard .

If I go too close they chase me .

It is a supercedure queen who recently mated , to my surprise  at this time of yr .

I have not seen her,  just eggs .

But it is a very busy hive and brings in honey .

I may just put up with her until after the rata flow .

Then requeen the hive with a queen from my very docile very yellow queen  hive .

 But this hive never seems so busy .

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4 hours ago, Nedeljko said:

I am sure Italians are great for the Mediterranean type of climate but Carniolans are better by far for NZ in my opinion.

i don't get why people race to a conclusion that type A or type B is better in NZ

plenty of success stories throughout nz with both carniolian and italian bees

 

it's not like the nz beekeeping industry failed to produce honey, healthy bees and survival prior to the importation of carnie bees.

makes sense to me that people would prefer the bees that suit their approach to beekeeping, which is likely learnt via exposure to the bees they have/become used to

 

1 hour ago, kaihoka said:

I have a nasty hive  in my orchard .

If I go too close they chase me .

It is a supercedure queen who recently mated , to my surprise  at this time of yr .

wonder if there's a survivor amm nearby - what do the bees look like? might be worth a pic, think it's @Bighands who would likely be interested? as well as the rest of us that is! take a pic of a frame of bees from that hive for all of us! :)

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2 hours ago, yesbut said:

That's an interesting concept isn't it......indefinite improvement.....what would be the characteristics of a bee that could not be improved on ?

You do have to be careful that you don't breed one characteristic to the detriment of another but I do know that if you don't select for overall improvement with every generation you  very quickly lose any gains you have made.I have known several beekeepers who used the leave them alone approach and they invariably ended up with nasty, swarmy and thrifty but unproductive bees.You would expect these bees to be as resistant to disease as they are to beekeepers but that does not seem to be the case.

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44 minutes ago, tommy dave said:

 

i don't get why people race to a conclusion that type A or type B is better in NZ

plenty of success stories throughout nz with both carniolian and italian bees

 

it's not like the nz beekeeping industry failed to produce honey, healthy bees and survival prior to the importation of carnie bees.

makes sense to me that people would prefer the bees that suit their approach to beekeeping, which is likely learnt via exposure to the bees they have/become used to

 

wonder if there's a survivor amm nearby - what do the bees look like? might be worth a pic, think it's @Bighands who would likely be interested? as well as the rest of us that is! take a pic of a frame of bees from that hive for all of us! :)

I will have a good look for her next time .

I think some north island drones must have blown down here , I can not imagine any south island drones producing grumpy bees.

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