Here goes my Lost Bee pure queen breeding idea in the same apiary.
The only think I can think of that MAY WORK without artificial insemination
is this. It may work or it may not. But it will be easy to find out it it works.
I hope my wacky idea works for us all.
1. Let's say your far away from other bee keepers, i.e 50+ miles. An island would be
the idea closed breeding location.
2. I'm going to use only two bee hives in an a apiary to simplify this example.
If you have more hives than two please adjust it to your circumstance.
3. Let's also say, that your two bee hives comprise of an Italian Bee
hive and a Carniolan Bee hive. I figured using yellow bee and a black
bee would make it easier to tell if my idea would work or not.
3. Now, your queens are getting old (pretend 2 years) and you want
to replace them with virgin queens from cells you raised or bought.
Without the drones from the other hive in your apiary mating with
4. Decide which hive you want mated first and get and raise a
few virgin queens from queen cells from that hive in case the
first virgin doesn't mate well,dies,etc.
5. Temporarily bank the other virgin queens as an insurance policy.
6. Pretend you want to breed your Italian queen first. This is what
I would do. Since drones are the largest bees in the colony and
queen extruder can keep a keep a queen from passing thru. I would
devise a drone excluder cage using material something like a queen
excluder, and place it on the Carniolan hive's entrance well after
nightfall. Once the drones that flew during the day are back home.
Hopefully, all straggler drones die. This would be done a few days
before the Italian queens hatch or arrive if you bought them.
7. This would keep the Carniolan drones confined inside their hive
for the time being. Since you don't want them mating with your
Italian virgin queen this is a good thing. This drone excluder cage
wouldn't interfere with the Carniolan workers at all in their food
gathering excursions. That being that a queen exluder don't
stop them from passing.
8. After you have proof that new eggs are being layed by
your newly mated Italian queen you can remove your drone
cage from the Carniolan hive and move on to phase two.
7. Which is to raise a few queen cells from the Carniolan hive for
breeding and a few days before the Carniolan virgin queen cells
hatch, you put the drone cage onto your Italian hive again long
after nightfall like you did previously with the Italian hive.
8. Now you Italian drones are confined and your Italian workers
can still go about their work. Now virgin Carniolan queen can go
on her mating flight in a few days with her carniolan drones to mate.
without any Italian drones mixing in.
9. Finally, after you have proof that new eggs are being layed by
your newly mated Carniolan queen you can remove your drone
cage from the Italian hive.
I got the idea in part from reading about drone excluders on this site.
I imagine this would all work if you dont have feral bees
or another beekeeper nearby as well.
The only other thing I can think of right now that may interfere
with keeping your bee races pure is that if one of your newly mated
queens dies at a later date, an a superceding queen is born, you
don't catch it in time, and she now mates with any other hive.
At least, it's idea to think of for those who can't afford
artificial insemination and/or have a qualified person to do.
If this all works out I wonder how long it will be before an apiary
supplier comes out with drone excluders in their catalog?
I know that would buy one. I bet a drone excluder may keep
out mice, moths and possibly large hornets out of the hive
I have probably started an avalanche of stinging frenzy with this idea.