Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    3,921

    Default John and Carol Harbo

    I need to give them two thumbs up, they deserve more, but it's all I can give them. I can go into details if people like, but service was outstanding and they went above and beyond.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    3,181

    Default Re: John and Carol Harbo

    Quote Originally Posted by JRG13 View Post
    I need to give them two thumbs up, they deserve more, but it's all I can give them.
    I agree. All of my exchanges with them were great!
    Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    3,921

    Default Re: John and Carol Harbo

    Sorry, took awhile to get back to this post, but I had to let it come to fruition somewhat. Anyways, I'm a big fan of bringing in new genetics. I know some don't quite believe in it, there's some that think it just leads to crappy bees if you intermix too much and don't focus, but that's another story. I have some II queens, and wanting to compare, my plan is to mate daughters in different locations with different stocks and start evaluating. I ordered an II queen from John and Carol and she arrived in great condition. I opted for a push-in introduction, which i'm not a big fan of, or believer that it's a more effective way of introducing queens. I've had great success with standard introductions, and can't think of any that lead to a queen being released and killed, not to say I haven't lost queens in cages. Carol was great at communicating with me when the queen would ship and set up things beautifully, even personally calling me to confirm if the week of shipping was optimal on my end. I got the queen under the cage on a Thursday night, checked on her Saturday, then Monday, all looked well and she even looked like she was in laying condition on Monday. Went in on Wednesday to release, and didn't see her disc running around and then saw her rolling around stone dead in the cage, can't say my heart didn't just sink straight to the ground, just always sucks finding a dead queen, let alone an II breeder. The next day, I emailed Carol, stating how sorry I was and appreciated the service and would order again next year and my biggest regret was losing something they put some time and effort into producing. John emailed back, with some words of encouragement and stated he'd be sending a replacement queen the following week, free of charge, with the caveat it would be a queen he normally wouldn't sell due to minor defect etc... but would of course lay perfectly good eggs for grafting. Can't say enough how grateful I am, and just found her out of her cage, standard introduction, walking around in good condition, so it looks like I will be getting some daughters with Harbo genetics this year afterall.

    As a side note, going back to the original queen, she had brood emerging as I got her under the cage, had 50-60 young bees with her at time of death, and actually did lay up a patch of brood before dying, so it's still not clear what happened to her, John had some ideas but nothing conclusive, but his support was welcome. If you're in the market to try some VSH II breeders, I'd definitely recommend them.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    3,921

    Default Re: John and Carol Harbo

    Only initial experience. I do have some of Bill Carpenter's queens, he selects for mite mauling as well, but I just got them this year.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    7,078

    Default Re: John and Carol Harbo

    Just curious, the replacement queen had a minor defect. what would that actually be?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Weeki Wachee, Florida,USA
    Posts
    2,213

    Default Re: John and Carol Harbo

    It's great to here about folks that operate like that !
    It pretty much makes you want to throw money at them.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    3,921

    Default Re: John and Carol Harbo

    Oldtimer, damaged leg etc... or perhaps a poor pattern, but would still have usable larva. I will try to isolate some VSH will Carpenter's queens and see how they hybridize, perhaps next year.
    Last edited by JRG13; 06-16-2015 at 02:31 PM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    3,181

    Default Re: John and Carol Harbo

    Quote Originally Posted by JRG13 View Post
    and actually did lay up a patch of brood before dying

    Wow, you should have immediately grafted this.

    Glad to hear it worked out.
    Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Spencer, MA, USA
    Posts
    2,228

    Default Re: John and Carol Harbo

    Quote Originally Posted by JRG13 View Post
    Only initial experience. I do have some of Bill Carpenter's queens, he selects for mite mauling as well, but I just got them this year.
    Let us know how his bees are please.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    3,921

    Default Re: John and Carol Harbo

    Astro, by the time I thought about checking, it was a little late. Camero, they seem good so far. I bought 5 standard queens and a breeder. Out of the 5 standard queens, 4 were introduced successfully, one was getting harrassed after introduction and flew off. Out of those 4, one queen was superceded quickly, I noticed she had a damaged leg after a few weeks but she might have failed too. They attempted to supercede her, had 4 great cells, I was going to collect them to make splits, but all were torn down on the day I went to make splits, queen was still laying well. Few weeks later, I found them superceding her again, and she had stopped laying. I split her off, the original nuc requeened successfully, she never started laying again, and disapeared about a week later. I gave them a frame of eggs and larva from the best of the 3 remaining queens and they have requeened successfully as of last week. The breeder queen looks good as well. I will graft from her this year and keep you posted on how they do. I've heard w/o treatment they may not be very productive after their initial year, but I won't let it get there. Although I would like to see true resistance, not sure how attainable it is here in Cali with our poor flows and high bee densities. The next best thing I can figure, are bees that can tolerate or keep mite levels low enough to make it a full year w/o dwindling down to 1-3 frames of bees come fall with heavy PMS. I don't mind a fall treatment, but a lot of times, the very susceptible hives or even 1st year nucs don't even make it that far w/o collapsing or after treating the hives take too long to build back up in spring to really fit pollinating almonds or making early splits.

    Ideally, I'm hoping to combine VSH/Hygenics with allgrooming to see if I can get resistance in this area, I know other's are looking at it too as I just read an article in Bee Culture on it, combing VSH with Purdue's ankle biters. Will probably switch to II for some true breeding at some point, but there isn't enough time in the day right now to plan it out properly. That being said, I'm a collector of germplasm at heart, so I'm always trying to get queens sent this way that might be 'resistant' but most people just can't find the courage to put a few queens in the mail it seems. I offer to pay good $$, so I'll throw that out there to anyone who thinks they have some good TF stock.

    On a side note, I'll be bringing in caucasians this year from Old Sol and probably get a WSU breeder in 2016, or maybe this year since they ship kind of late and I wouldn't be able to use them til the following year anyway, but people seem to be able to mine some good hybrids out of them.
    Last edited by JRG13; 06-16-2015 at 03:38 PM.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads