Re: Something needs to change - looking for suggestions
This statement is moderately incorrect as shown by the existence of numerous mutually incompatible wild species such as Apis Cerana, Apis Dorsata, and Apis Florea.
Bees, in nature, will constantly reconverge on the normative genotype.
Where it falls apart is when bees are subject to external selection pressure. When honeybees are carried into a northern climate, they rapidly adapt to overwintering in a cold environment. Any that don't adapt die. The same is happening with honeybees exposed to mites. The only glitch is that beekeepers who treat for mites are slowing down the process.
It helps to also keep this in perspective. We had American Chestnut trees here in the Eastern U.S. until about 100 years ago. They were wiped out by chestnut blight. If there had been any significant tolerance to chestnut blight in the species, you would have expected the population to rebound. Unfortunately, minimal tolerance of any kind has been found. Crossbreeding with chestnut trees from Asia that carry blight resistance genes will eventually get the species into recovery. This illustrates two important requirements in bee breeding. The first is that resistance mechanisms must be present in the population in order for selection to occur. The second is that resistance mechanisms can sometimes be brought in from a related species or even from a related population of the same species. We have access to resistance mechanisms in honeybees. Lets put them to use.
DarJones - 46 years, 14 colonies (max 40), sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 11 frame broodnest, small cell