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Thread: Stock Dilution?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
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    Washington County, Maine
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    Default Stock Dilution?

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Dewey View Post
    If one imports stock to test, to what extent is the test validated (or invalidated) if nucs are made out of them and queens are raised from them and open mated? Is the dilution of the imported stock important? Or is having bees that are alive the real trump card?

    In an ideal world (one where I don't live but would like to visit) if I acquire XYZ super wonderful survivor stock should I need to get in to nuc mode or should the acquired hives survive just fine allowing me to maintain my hive count? I am primarily concerned about surviving mites and Nosema. AFB is not a problem near me (knock on wood.)
    Treatment Free appears to be a method for keeping bees, rather than a result that is reached. Should one be concerned with diluting imported stock or should it be seen instead as adding genetic material to the pool of whatever bees are kept in a certain area?

    In my case I need to think about migratory colonies that are brought into my area May/June and I've got to assume that drones from those colonies hang out in DCAs just like any other drones.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Fayetteville, Arkansas
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    Default Re: Stock Dilution?

    Much would depend on a few factors. First, what time of the year do your queens fly, or when you make queens or what time of year do you have swarms?

    Can you set up your hives to produce enough drones to limit the effect if queens need to fly during those times?

    Or, is that a bad thing? Can you make it with open mating with unfavorable (to you) stock in the area and deal with the results?
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Stock Dilution?

    Thank you Solomon for your reply. Swarm season here starts in May and runs pretty much through June, nicely coinciding with the time commercial pollinators are in the area. I need to build nucs for over wintering by the middle of July in order to have them build up adequately for winter. I might be able to push this date back a week or two by making stronger and fewer nucs.

    Most commercial pollinators are gone by the end of June; the exact time of their pullout depends on the shape of the bees and the demands of the next stop on the pollination circuit. As I understand it the next big crop is Massachusetts cranberries.

    If I am going to use swarm cells to build nucs there are likely to be commercial pollinators in the area when the queens mate. If I graft, and wait until the middle of June to do so, I'm more likely to avoid the commercial folks' drones, but need to get my timing right the first time!

    I'd rather avoid manipulating the colonies to produce drones; If I delay grafting I should be able to deal with whatever genetics I end up with; the expensive alternative is to (continue) bringing in queens to make up nucs with. But that seems to fly in the face of the sustainability arguments.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Fayetteville, Arkansas
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    Default Re: Stock Dilution?

    So you would like to avoid flying virgins with strangers in town?
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Washington County, Maine
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    Default Re: Stock Dilution?

    That would be my preference. Just don't know about those guys from out of town!

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