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Thread: Breed type

  1. #1
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    Jan 2006
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    I have 3 hives from feral stock all are the same as the feral bees that i see in many gum trees around here, my friend has 10 hives all bred from very yellow Italian bees that are very gentle and do'nt need smoke. My bees like all the ferals in the area are a mixture of bees with 2 yellow bands and some say 20% with no yellow bands at all.

    My friend breeds his own queens in his own yard by just takeing a nuke or 2 and raising new queens.

    They have stayed the same this past 10 years and do'nt seem to have mixed with the local "roughies"

    Is there an evidance that queens usually mate with drones from their own yards?

    Alex
    Alex King (K142), Melbourne, Oz. Beekeeper since 1962

  2. #2
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    On the contrary, there is excellent evidence that queens will fly great distances away from their hive to mate. The longest record I can recall was about 6 miles. If there are no other colonies within about a 6 mile radius, the queen is highly likely to mate only with drones from other colonies located in the yard she is in.

    Fusion

  3. #3
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    >My bees like all the ferals in the area are a mixture of bees with 2 yellow bands and some say 20% with no yellow bands at all.

    Sounds like what I'm finding here.

    >They have stayed the same this past 10 years and do'nt seem to have mixed with the local "roughies"

    >Is there an evidance that queens usually mate with drones from their own yards?

    No, but there is eveidence that the Italian commercial stocks don't breed with the ferals.

    http://www.beesource.com/pov/ahb/jee1995.htm

    My guess is that it's size related. That the large cell drones and the small cell drones look for similar queens, but it could also be that the drones and the queens from each tend to fly at different times of the day.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
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    > No, but there is eveidence that the Italian commercial stocks don't breed with the ferals. <

    Michael would this have anything to do with drone speed?
    \"I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree<br />And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made<br />nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey bee<br />and live alone in the bee-loud glade.\"<br />-- WB Yeats

  5. #5
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    &gt;Michael would this have anything to do with drone speed?

    I have no idea. But if you want me to theorize on why, I can think of a few possibilities:

    1) As you say, maybe drone speed. (size realted?)

    2) Maybe the drones and queens from the ferals fly at different times of the day than the Italians.

    3) There is some evidence on preferences on size, where small bees are looking for small queens.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
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    Wouldn't that difference reduce the number of matings between EHB and AHB, too? Maybe the preference is on the part of the feral drones.

  7. #7
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    personally, I think the drones have little chance of mating with anything if you look at the individual drone as compared to the thousands of them. So with that thought, it seems to me that they would not have the luxuray of being to picky!!
    Bill

  8. #8
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    Well stated Bill. I interpret what happens during mating flights as "the average queen flies further than the average drone."

  9. #9
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    &gt;"the average queen flies further than the average drone."

    Exactly. There are no guarentees that she won't mate with a drone from her hive, it's just that the deck is stacked against it. Not that it doesn't happen.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  10. #10
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    &gt;&gt;personally, I think the drones have little chance of mating with anything if you look at the individual drone as compared to the thousands of them. So with that thought, it seems to me that they would not have the luxuray of being to picky!!

    I agree, I don't think drones really could be picky. I'm puzzled, though, why commercial Italian queens are unlikely to mate with feral drones but seem to mate readily with AHB drones? The drones of the AHB and the ferals should be about the same size, should fly at about the same speeds (I imagine?), and the feral drones should even be more similar to the commercial Italian queens than the AHB drones are, yet the results of studies seem to show that Italian queens are unlikely to mate with feral drones but are likely to mate with AHB drones. What's the difference? That's why I wondered about mate choice by the drones rather than the queens.

  11. #11
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    There's a really good joke in here someplace. But I guess I should stop with this: They tell me size doesn't matter.

    Seriously, I don't know if the drone or the queen is the pickiest. But she's got my vote. I think the queen can outfly any drone she wants. Or doesn't wants.

    Hawk
    KC0YXI

  12. #12
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    Africanized bees rear proportionately more drones than European bees and drones are present in Africanized bee colonies longer during the season. You are likely right Robert, size probably doesn't matter.

    The avionics department at the place I used to work had a sign on the wall reading: "It's not the size that matters; it's the frequency"

    [size="1"][ January 24, 2006, 12:33 AM: Message edited by: Dick Allen ][/size]

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