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  1. #1

    Question

    Anyone had any experience with this hybrid? I was considering purchasing some from a breeder, but wanted to see what everyone here thought!
    If you see me runnin' you'd better keep up!
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  2. #2
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    Generally, these would be "mutt" bees. There's nothing wrong with that, if they're from a good breeder. Find someone who uses these bees, and find out how they work in your area.

  3. #3
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    Italian queen crossed with Carniolan drones works pretty good. The opposite cross swarms excessively and can be vicious.

    Fusion

  4. #4
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    Fusion
    What is the basis for this statement? I was planning on grafting from my Carni queen. Odds are the mating drones would be Italians. Maybe I should rethink my plan.

    david

  5. #5
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    David,

    I've raised Carniolan queens and mated them with Italians in the past. I got lots of swarming and 2 or 3 hives that were very difficult to handle. When I mated Italian queens with Carniolan drones, swarming was no worse than typical Italian and they were gentle. Please note, I don't worry too much about a "hot" colony, they are easy to re-queen. I do get bothered when most of my colonies swarm.

    This is also documented in Brother Adam's book Breeding the Honeybee.

    I wouldn't hesitate to grow the queens, just be aware you may get some negatives in the F1.

    Fusion

  6. #6
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    Fusion
    I have been thinking about this. This is somewhat simplified, but bear with me.

    The Drone carries a copy of his mother's genes (unfertilized egg), while the breeding queen will have two sets (her mothers and her fathers.)

    If what you say is true, then the hot gene must have come from the Carni Queen. So that means that the Carni Q passed on one hot gene.

    But the Carni Q hive was allegedly not hot. So that means that the Carni Queen must have got the hot gene from the mother's mate, not from the mother. Otherwise the original Carni hive would have been hot.

    Now if you had taken a drone from the same mother that laid the egg from which the Carni queen developed, that drone should have been calm.

    But if you think about it, if the queen is italian and the drone carni, the carni drone is still carrying over his mother's genes. So if the mother's gene was calm, the drone should have that gene.

    The other possibility is that the hot gene is recessive, but only recessive with a calm carni gene, not with a calm italian gene.

    If that is true, there is still a 50 / 50 chance that the Carni Queen will have at least one calm gene. SO if she has a calm gene and a hot gene, and she is bred with a calm italian drone, then there is a 50/50 chance she will pass on calmness.

    Likewise, if there is a Carni drone whose mother has a recessive hot gene, that Carni drone has a 50/50 chance of having his mother's recessive hot gene.

    Therefore it seems to me that the odds are equal for a Carni queen mating with an Italian drone to have the same charateristics as the Italian Queen mating with the Carni Drone (assuming the same parentage for both).

    This is gross oversimplification, but I simply cannot understand how a Carni Q Italian D mating could differ from the Italian Q Carni Drone.

  7. #7
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    IMO it's not a hot gene that's involved. It's the first cross hybrid vigor and how that happens to end up expressed in that particular cross. The Starlines were just an Italian first cross from two seperate strains the they had to take care, even though both strains are gentle, to make sure what qualities come out in the cross. ALL bees have some defensive behavior and some swarming behavior. The expression of these traits is a question of degree not a question of a gene that isn't there.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  8. #8
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    David,

    Stinging behavior is expressed as a result of multiple alleles. Its not simple inheritance. There is some evidence of both Xenia and Metaxenia in bees particularly associated with stinging behavior. This is why you will often see Buckfast mentioned as very gentle when pure bred but "hot" in the second generation. I have seen many queens over the years that were a cross of two gentle strains but their offspring were very aggressive.

    There is a great deal of evidence that stinging behavior is controlled by the drone's genetics. In other words, if the drone is from a "hot" strain, any offspring will be hot. This is significant enough that Steve Taber wrote an article a few years ago in one of the journals where he talked about "stinging drones". It might be worth looking this up!

    Fusion

  9. #9
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    Fusion and MB
    Thanks for bearing with me on this. I will look for the article. The genetics are very interesting and really important I think. Any more help on this would be appreciated. I can see already how valuable it is to do Instrumental Insemination.

  10. #10
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    FUSION
    ok, i see by your web page that you are an accomplished botanist. So here is what I found on this:

    Xenia and Metaxenia
    �� Xenia: The phenotypic effect of the male genotype
    on the endosperm of the seed
    �� Metaxenia: The phenotypic effect of the male
    genotype fruit tissues
    now how does this translate in layman's terms to bees?

  11. #11
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    You're getting there David.

    There is an effect of the male parent on the offspring such that reciprocal crosses do not give equivalent results.

    In the case we have been discussing, the cross of an Italian queen mated to Carniolan drones is typically better behaved than the Italian parent and swarms no more than the Italian parent. The better behaved part seems to come from the Carniolan drones and the low swarming comes from the Italian queen. This is a double example of a male effect and a female effect.

    The reciprocal cross of a Carniolan queen with Italian drones results in a bee that is less well behaved than the Carniolan parent but swarms more excessively than the Carniolan. The behavior comes from the Italian drones and the excess swarming from the Carniolan queen. This is another double example of a male and a female account.

    If it helps any, I got very good results with second generation Carniolan queens mated with Buckfast drones. I purchased a few Carniolan queens about 6 years ago. One of them was outstanding so I raised a few queens from her and open mated in an apiary of Buckfast bees. I got a lot of swarming and 2 very aggressive hives plus one moderately aggressive hive. There were 7 or 8 others that all tried to swarm. I picked a very good queen from this group and raised second generation queens again mated to Buckfast drones. The result has been an excellent honey producing group of queens.

    I suggest you go ahead with your plans of raising queens. Just be prepared to deal with the negatives involved. If you get an aggressive hive, re-queen it! As for the swarming, that too can be managed but it takes some work.

    Fusion

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