Genetic Diversity: What Would Brother Adam Do... Today?
I have been reading about how Brother Adam traveled the world over years, identifying different races of bees, and returning to his home apiary with queens of these different races or strains in order to add them to his breeding program. Then I was also listening to a discussion about the importance of genetic diversity to the strength and vitality of the bees.
And I thought, how would one feasibly go about creating the widest genetic diversity in one's operation today?
To travel around and get permits and to gain access to the so many regions and bring back queens to one place as Brother Adam did would be nearly impossible today. It would certainly be cost prohibitive for most. Plus there's political upheaval and violence in a number of places... And now we have the work of Brother Adam to reference, so there's no need to try and 're-do' what he did.
But there might be value in genetic diversity - to a point. I don't think you'd want to get into such wild variations that you'd be a danger, or major pest to people around you, or to other beekeepers.
So, how would a person create the most genetically diverse - yet commercially viable - stock in a single operation today?
I've read that just a small number of breeders supply most of the world's queens, so what would be the best a regular beekeeper could do?