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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
    Posts
    2,887

    Default The future of US bee genetics is bound to involve sealed borders.

    With importation of queens and packages from Australia now illegal and the only two remaining countries we can import from being Canada and New Zealand I think it is inevitable that our borders will be sealed in the very near future and the entire bee industry here in the USA will be dependent on existing bloodlines.

    I hope that in the near future AI will make it so drone sperm from anywhere in the world will be able to be shipped into the US, but at this point in time there appears to be no opportunities to buy bee sperm and AI our queens with it.

    I am not well enough versed in bee genetics to consider the consequences of limited genetic diversity on the honey bee industry. Even my wife whom is a Human Geneticist says that bee genetics is much more complicated due to the haploid nature of Drones and the ability of the queen to mate with multiple drones.

    Has anybody thought about how our industry will change without importation or instituted any programs into their management plan to diversify now. I am starting to import stock from Canada even though the costs are high. I am starting with Buckfast stock that was imported into Canada from Denmark in the 1990s. I am also looking for other Canadian stock with recent roots in Europe. A few years ago no stock could come into the US from Canada and we could not import stock from Europe while they could so I think Canada is an overlooked opportunity to get the most recently imported lines from Europe.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,120

    Default Re: The future of US bee genetics is bound to involve sealed borders.

    If you are getting "Buckfast" from Ontario, in all likelihood, it originated from Weaver Apiaries, not Denmark. For a number of years I participated in a program that sent comb w/ eggs produced by "Buckfast" queens into Ontario, Canada. Ontario imported sperm, but only specific comb w/ eggs could be transported across the border from NY to Ont.

    If you are getting queens from Canada, hwo much do they cost and where are they coming from? What kinds of hoops do you have to jump thru to get approval? And if you can get queens from Canada, what keeps people from getting queens from other parts of the world thru Canada?
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
    Posts
    2,887

    Default Re: The future of US bee genetics is bound to involve sealed borders.

    I have hired a broker to handle the importation paperwork, the queens themselves only cost around 40.00 each US, but with the broker costs and application fees it puts the queens around 100.00. The breeder I am working with on the Buckfasts runs a breeding program that was certified by Buckfast Abby until they stopped production of Buckfasts. His original stock came from Buckfast in 1980s and once he could no longer import from England he turned to Denmark to get the stock.

    I guess I will find out in June how the border crossing goes, I have read about the problems other people have had with bringing queens across which is why I decided to use a broker.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    dadeville, alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,163

    Default Re: The future of US bee genetics is bound to involve sealed borders.

    Sadly honeybee genetics has been bottled up since the anti-importation laws were placed all those years ago. Thus we have only 39 matriarchial lineages left in the US due to Varroa mite predation. We need more lineages from races that we due not use in this country to broaden out the genetic bottle neck. TK

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,120

    Default Re: The future of US bee genetics is bound to involve sealed borders.

    How do we get them w/out exposing ourselves to potential harm?
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Alachua County, FL, USA
    Posts
    6,772

    Default Re: The future of US bee genetics is bound to involve sealed borders.

    Sperm can be imported with approval. The Buckfast from Canada mentioned probably come from Ferguson Apiaries. It is interesting the lineages are the same or similar numbers as corresponding lines in Dartmoor and Denmark. I have been concerned for some time and forced discussions at ABF and other venues. http://americasbeekeeper.com/inbred_until_dead.htm
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

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