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  1. #1
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    Default Tell me why this is a bad idea

    I have a few different lines of genetics on my place and I am tempted to mark the daughter queens with different colors to easily distinguish them from each other.
    Of course I mark the hive or mating nucs, but tape can fade or come off. Also folks sometimes have questions about their hives that are headed by my queens, but don't remember which strain they bought.
    I am sure this has been discussed previously. I'd appreciate any thoughts on the subject.

    Dedicate a color for each type?-or stick with universal yearly colors for all.
    Lauri

  2. #2
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    Dec 2005
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    What about Numbered Disc Tags?
    Mark Berninghausen "Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board." Zora Neale Hurston

  3. #3
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    Jun 2011
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    Elmira, NY
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    If you want a record of who buys what strain of bee when, I'd suggest just keeping a record.

    If you want to confuse your customers so that the ones who want to replace year old queens can't figure out which ones are that age, mark them with non-standard colors.

    If you want them to buy queens from Tarboo or Old Sol next time, confuse them.

    Or, put 2 colors on the thorax, one being the standard color for the year.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    I once read an article and on you tube vids that the author said there is no such thing as a pure genetic bees anymore. They are all mutts after a few generations because the drone pool got mixed in drone congregation areas unless you somehow isolated them in mating yards to maintain their purity. So even with genetic testing of your queens it is hard to tell which lines they come from. We can only say their physical characteristics look like this type of bees. For example, when I see a yellow type bee then I will say she's an Italian queen bee. Also when I see the darker color bee I will say she's a carniolan queen bee. Anything in between is a mixed type queen bee. But if a dark Russian and Carniolan mixed then I cannot say what they are, really by the color. I always asked my local queen supplier what type of bees they are. Every time they hesitated for a while before giving me an answer. Many will say oh, carni, italian, mixed. Some will on purpose chose the Italian or Carniolan knowing what I like by the queen color. Now I have both Italian and Carniolan queens from the same original queen which I don't mind knowing genetic diversity is good for them and me.
    This is to give you an idea what it is like when running multiple lines of genetics. An idea I have is to use number disc tags along with a small dap of the year color on the side. This way you can track both. Universal color will not do because it will confuse the beekeeper more because of so many lines and queens raised each year. And color alone will not tell you much about where they come from. Must have a data base to keep track of them for your record. And for others also when they ask you. Just tell them I have both or these, which do you prefer?
    Ohh, almost forget to say a picture speaks a thousand words. So take a pic before sending them off to your customers. Very easy to maintain pics these days.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
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    Knox, Pa. USA
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    If you have different lines in the same breeding location, then in all reality you have the same lines or strains. As well as the lines of every beekeeper within 2 miles. And every feral colony. Research suggest that drones travel farther than do queens or workers to reach drone gathering areas. When a queen visits one for breeding she may be bred by as many as 20 different drones. Unless you are in a very remote mountainous region, or on a secluded island you cannot even begin to determine the strain or lines of bees. We can only categorizes bees by their color and trait characteristics in it’s broadest sense.
    so mark with the year and catigorize them by characteristics. log customer info for future reference and roll with it.

  6. #6
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    Jan 2009
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    Cookeville, TN, USA
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    If you do you should probably use completely different colers than the ones for years.

    You probably don't want to do this, but from some of the old books they used to mark queens by clipping the wings - left for even years right for odd or vise versa. Not fool proof but better than nothing. And more permanent than paint.
    5Y-25H-T-Z6b-0 winter losses in '14

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    Looks like disk numbers will be the way to go.
    I know every generation gets diluted, but I still want to know what lines they originated from. They will still retain some of those genetics. I can still select from those that exhibit those traits I feel are positive for that line and continue with my program.
    Thanks for the input

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    If you mark the queens differently I would try to use different shades of the current year's color and/or use nonstandard secondary colors for further identification if you felt the need.
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  9. #9
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    Jan 2003
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    Suffolk, VA
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Beregondo View Post
    If you want a record of who buys what strain of bee when, I'd suggest just keeping a record.

    If you want to confuse your customers so that the ones who want to replace year old queens can't figure out which ones are that age, mark them with non-standard colors.

    If you want them to buy queens from Tarboo or Old Sol next time, confuse them.

    Or, put 2 colors on the thorax, one being the standard color for the year.
    I couldn't agree more. The queen color code is as much of a standard as we have, and as producers/breeders we need to respect this standard. Customers rely on the color code meaning something that is accepted in the industry. I would be very upset if my new queen came this year with a yellow dot. I can see the conversation going something like "No, trust me, it really is a 2013 queen."
    Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    Ok Ok, you talked me out of it.
    The lure of quick information at a glance isn't worth the confusion down the road.
    I knew that, just wanted you all to tell me again Talk me out of a dumb move

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    I know you are clever enough to paint the queens thorax w/ this years color and then, after the paint has dried, paint half w/ a color code of your own.

    How many different shades of fingernail polish do you have? Or Model Paint can be used.

    I think it's a good idea. Don't give up so quickly.
    Mark Berninghausen "Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board." Zora Neale Hurston

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    Thanks Mark, I had considered that too.
    As for fingernail polish..Hee hee, my only color is dirt.
    But I'll come up with something good.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    Lauri, if I were you I would not be too much concern with how they are mixed. They will in natural environment anyway. Concentrate on how they look like on physical color. Like others have said the special characteristics are more important. If I were the customer I will be concern on 1) What do you have? Ohh, a golden Italian, great that's what I want to keep. 2) What do they do? Special characteristics I will sell. 3) Where you got them from? I got it from here and here apiary. 4) Mark this year color for easy ID. 5) Snap a pic of F3 queen from hive #1 and upload. Sold to Mr. Woody down the road in case he ask me about this queen again 2 years later.
    If you like you can make ID cards to give him and save a record for your future references.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    Do numbered discs come in year colors?
    Mark Berninghausen "Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board." Zora Neale Hurston

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Do numbered discs come in year colors?
    Yes, I already have red ones from Mann Lake who now carries them. I got a full set of colors from a store in Canada last year..I didn't use them since I mark the virgins when they hatch and felt the disk would really be pushing it as far as inhibiting them during mating flights. I'll mark them lightly when hatched with a paint pen, then disk mark them later after mating.

    http://www.mannlakeltd.com/beekeepin...es/page55.html
    (They call them Queen marking numbers at the bottom of the page)

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Do numbered discs come in year colors?
    Yes,
    http://www.beeworks.com/catalog/inde...roducts_id=125

    Thorne in the UK also sells them.
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    http://www.beeworks.com/catalog/inde...roducts_id=125


    Yup, those are the ones I have > I was wondering how well a red marker would show up. The red disks from both sources are a very bright flo-orange. (My favorite color for my arrow fletches) should make locating the queen a two second task.

    I think I have my plans for the first batch of queens..Right out of MY NEW INCUBATOR, thanks to Velbert for dropping me some inside info on a cool quality reptile incubator.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-2013-Exo...#ht_4858wt_929
    Last edited by Lauri; 04-15-2013 at 06:25 PM.

  18. #18
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    Apr 2010
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    Tipton, TN, USA
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    If your selling them, mark them with the proper color and record where your grafts came from.

    If these are for your "mother" queens, then color them whatever you want. They are your queens.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
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    Sacramento, CA, USA
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    That is a cool reptile incubator.
    Do you have back up solar or generator in case there is a power outage?
    Maybe take them out off the hives 2-3 days before they hatch then.

  20. #20
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    Apr 2011
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    Weeki Wachee, Florida,USA
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    Default Re: Tell me why this is a bad idea

    I like the idea. It will make your queens stand out.

    Here are some links I don't know how helpful they will be.
    Maybe they will inspire you!

    http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/walker/fe64p18.pdf

    http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/walker/en95p117.pdf

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