View Poll Results: Will you continue to purchase packages/nucs from southern GA
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Re: AHBs in GA - Man dead
It's funny (strange) to see beekeepers paranoid about honey bees.
Due to inherent stubbornness, or determination, I kept (Tucson's version of AHB) for more than a decade, I did get a feel for many of the unique behavioral traits that are said to belong to this "hybrid swarm". If I'd had a huge colony of them, living beneath a porch or building, then after I disturbed them (intentionally or not), I might expect to have them respond defensively. But, wait, I've seen bees absolutely guaranteed to be non-AHB respond in very similar defensive ways when their large colonies were disturbed. And too there actually was a huge colony/nest of AHB living within a few feet of my back fence and I only realized they were there after the mobile home they were living under had been moved away. It seems they were a source of many swarms that subsequently became colonies of mine.
These days I import queens known for the docile behavior of their workers, and breed from them. This has significantly changed the entire dynamic of my apiaries. But, since I can't yet afford to run my queen rearing operation in a remote location populated only with drones of selected pedigree, the open mating still produces a few queens that exhibit some less than desirable traits, but fortunately very few.
I say all this because I want to emphasize that a "hot" colony of EHB could just as easily have produced the same sorry result.
What I'm really trying to say is, why does it matter what "race" the hot bees are. Any "hot" bees should be dealt with in the same way. Why does it matter if they are AHB or are not AHB? Why bother to test/analyze if their extreme defensiveness stems from Africa or Europe. If they exhibit undesirable traits, simply treat them appropriately for their behavior and be done with them. Requeen or eliminate. Once the genetics that fostered the inappropriate behavior has been eliminated, why does it matter where it originated?
Concerning packages: The behavior of the bees that make up a package are no indicator of the colony the package will later become. Most, if not all packages are headed by queens that are not the mothers of the package bees they are shipped with.
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