Re: Systematic breeding in non-treatment management systems
I have been very pleased Sol to see you getting some success now you are using more traditional methods. Not just for you, but for other treatment free beekeepers who follow you. As a queen breeder, what really irked me when I first started reading the treatment free stuff on Beesource, was that, back then, there was a strong rejection of "traditional methods", and even quite a bit of derision of "old beekeepers, stuck in their ways".
Originally Posted by Solomon Parker
As a result of this mindset, I saw many struggling and not making any headway with their bees, sometimes for years. Problem being, just being treatment free, became such an all consuming mindset, that all else was thrown out the window by many, to their cost.
To me, queen breeding (and doing it well), is one of the foundations of good beekeeping, and success. It is one of the pinnacles of the art of beekeeping. I'm glad to see that you have opened up to using grafting, cell builders and all else that goes with solid, traditional, beekeeping skills. And the success that this is finally bringing to your operation.
I guess my main point is that when I first joined Beesource, there was disagreement between treaters, and non treaters. There still is of course. But one of the negative effects was that anything a treater had to say, was rejected. I feel it's very necessary, if beekeeping without chemicals is to advance, for those doing it to be open minded to the wisdom of the past, and reap the benefits, as you obviously have this last year.
Remember too, you have not found anything new. All you have done can be found in books written more than 50 years ago.
44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).