Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees? - Page 3
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  1. #41
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fusion_power View Post
    or overwintered nucs!
    Or both.

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  3. #42
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by dtrooster View Post
    If you have a large amount of ferals I'd casually make the statement that anybody who buy bees is a lazy idiot.
    Promoting ferals is a whimsical fairy tale in my experience. I quite wasting my time, effort and resources on them years ago. All they have ever been good for is maybe drawing out some comb.
    After 40 years of beekeeping, I've come to realize that the bees can fix most of my mistakes.

  4. #43
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Colobee View Post
    Promoting ferals is a whimsical fairy tale in my experience. I quite wasting my time, effort and resources on them years ago. All they have ever been good for is maybe drawing out some comb.
    Are the feral bees where you are genetically different than your managed bees?
    David Matlock

  5. #44
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    What you will need?: Because beekeeping, like farming, is all local!
    Gather consensus with beekeepers on the same topic--to breed local resistant bees! Outline a flowchart first--what, how, when and where.
    Find cheap local materials for the I.I. process--to keep those commercial packages from contaminating your local virgins.
    Establish isolated local mating stations--to keep DCAs more pure with MR (mite resistant) local drones.
    Select and trade breeders and F1s among local beekeepers--they better have resistant built in.
    Keep records of the mite resistant queens bought in from different region of the country--this will serve as a future queen source reference. Not all claimed will have resistance built in bees even from reputable queen breeding company.
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  6. #45

    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    What would it take to put together a network of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees adapted to your region? How would you ensure the stock is disseminated widely within that region?
    It would need action, not discussions.

    I already did this starting a forum.
    Our group now has 4 local members and 3 in distance but near enough to drive to.

    Donīt talk. Try and take action. It need some time though. Forget the clubs and lovers of discussing failures.

  7. #46
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nordak View Post
    Start selling local packages. One of the reasons people buy out of state packages is no one is selling locally.
    No one sells local packages in New England that I know of. The way to go up here is to overwinter nucleus colonies, started in June/July.

  8. #47
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    It would need action, not discussions.
    Donīt talk. Try and take action. It need some time though. Forget the clubs and lovers of discussing failures.
    As I said, did that years ago. Spent huge $$. Spent huge time. Nothing happened.

    And, what about the Ohio program? They had a good organization, broke the state up into regions, tried sharing stocks. Nothing happened and the program fell apart.

    And, what about the Northeast Bee Breeders started by Bjorn...formerly a member here. What happened? Nothing happened and the program fell apart.

    So, you can see my negative attitude about setting up a local, regional, or national breeding program. That doesn't mean I wouldn't try again, but not until a serious, knowledgable, experienced group of queen breeders showed some degree of commitment to the program.

  9. #48
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    For me, mite-tolerant and resistant has become a non-issue in my stock.

    I do see a few mites here and there, but they have not been as bad as I had them first around the year 2000 when I decided not to treat and let them bee. Naively, I first did treat them with oxalic acid then. But I hated the idea of beekeeping as "an intensive care unit management practice" for an OCD personality. Where is the joy in dispensing this and that medication to the bees when they have done fine for eons? Worse, I abhorred the notion that bees cannot thrive on their own in the woods but only in the bubble the all-knowing man created. That will be a fine world we are inheriting to our kids.

    Hence my life-long commitment to rescue feral bees. Let them bee: honeybees will make honey in spite of the meddlesome beekeeper.

    Last year, as painful as it is for me to confess here, I lost 35 colonies in all and only one survived from small hive beetles. I lost the threshold to trap or treat my bees against SHB's about which I had known for some time. Up until last year, my bees were able to fend them off. Last year, their infestation was different, out of this world, in Oklahoma. They got into my nucs first around late August and then in October and November, they wiped me out clean, including strong colonies kept in the sun and including four Martha's from Mike, largely because this bug was and is a relatively new kid in town: SHB's came here in America in 1992.

    In Africa, as the temperature is mild, bees will abscond as soon as they are overwhelmed by SHB's, their coping strategy, and even my strong colonies would also abscond under pressure, but in November in Oklahoma. What's the use of a large swarm in the tree in November?

    This spring I let a failed nuc attract SHB's like a bait box; it was packed with SHB larva. I then froze all the infested frames to maximize their control as it will be impossible to wipe them out. I now also use traps between frames for those few visitors as they are ubiquitous in the south. Nearly all the hives I have now seem to chase and jail those critters, and I am hoping they would do so into the traps.

    My point in this dribble is that it takes time for the bees to adapt and then adopt to external and internal pressures eventually, the adaptability being the most important component in the survival of any species. Despite my loss, however, I believe the number one problem in beekeeping is the loss of honeybee habitat, the Bermudafication of idle lands, in particular.

    Because of this habitat loss, it is almost impossible to produce comb honey now. If you are a beekeeper, you now must plant bee forage yourself, for you cannot rely on nature any more. My ten acre is loaded with Vitex and Dutch clovers. No, I don't mow while the latter is in bloom. By the time they go into seeding, I then let my horses graze so that they can broadcast their seeds into other pastures.

    So, don't treat and start planting.

    EB
    Last edited by Earthboy; 05-11-2017 at 10:35 AM.

  10. #49
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    No one sells local packages in New England that I know of. The way to go up here is to overwinter nucleus colonies, started in June/July.
    Yeah, sorry. I forget there's a whole big beekeeping world out there sometimes.

    Bottom line: Sell local. People want your bees.

  11. #50
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Riverderwent View Post
    Are the feral bees where you are genetically different than your managed bees?
    Most of the swarms I speak of are of unknown origin - feral mutts. I've pretty much given up on collecting stray swarms - as I said, time after time they are a waste of time, effort, & resources. I'll make an exception if they are easily gotten & drawn out comb is needed. That's about all they are good for - a season of comb drawing.

    Swarms from my own hives are few & far between - BF are renowned for low swarming tendencies. BF colony swarms are usually the exception to the "ferals suck" observations.
    After 40 years of beekeeping, I've come to realize that the bees can fix most of my mistakes.

  12. #51
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    As I said, did that years ago. Spent huge $$. Spent huge time. Nothing happened.

    And, what about the Ohio program? They had a good organization, broke the state up into regions, tried sharing stocks. Nothing happened and the program fell apart.

    And, what about the Northeast Bee Breeders started by Bjorn...formerly a member here. What happened? Nothing happened and the program fell apart.

    So, you can see my negative attitude about setting up a local, regional, or national breeding program. That doesn't mean I wouldn't try again, but not until a serious, knowledgable, experienced group of queen breeders showed some degree of commitment to the program.
    Perhaps part of the problem is that people aren't educated about the need to support local genetic diversity and local adapted bees by supporting local bee breeders. I don't hear anything about that in the local bee club here. One bee is as good as another if you treat them. Its leadership at the club level that is missing.

    Maybe with a change in generation, priorities will change.

  13. #52
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    If all you want is bees in a box or 2 and a taste of honey, and realy that’s most of the beekeepers out there, swarms aren’t a bad way to go…free bees are free bees… and this years trapping experience is showing me the few years I spent without bees do to lack of $$$ and swarm calls was my own fault.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nordak View Post
    Or both.
    yes I think the key and the issue here is local production…
    Nucs, over wintered nucs, queens, packages.. but all that takes some one making queens..
    and, the point I have argued before… teaching puling a summer nuc to over winter as a year 1 skill/task not some advanced beekeeping stuff, people believe what you teach them
    the more people off the (non local) package bee tread mill the more a local/regional stock will flourish.

    my thoughts
    drop the TF brand, its tarnished, go with “Locally adapted Mite resistant stock”
    I have run in to 4th year beekeepers scared of the ideal of a split, Local sustainability needs to be taught at a base level

    Start from the bottom up, not the top down … I rember a MP video where he is talking about doing a talk at a bee meeting and the old crustys were in the back grumbling about how nucs won’t over winter in their area and wide eyed noobs were eating it up… next time he came back threw the crustys were siting in the front with note books be cause it worked for the noobs

    He who teaches wins-Become a teacher or get involved with those that do
    Imagine if new beeks were taught that pulling a summer nuc was standard management for a 1st year and someone was making local cells avabuly for $5-10, they were part of your beginner class fee, show up here july 10th (or whatever local date ) to pick up yours, the nuc boxes are for sale on your way out.

    Honestly no one does stuff “out of the goodness of their heart” for very long, they burn out, so ya got to grease the skids. This way the cell producers(s) are fairly compensated for minimal labor/resources(using simple starter finishers) , the local shop can get on board as this means an additional sale to a 1st years, that hopefully means a bigger wood wear purchase come spring, more profit to them then brokering the sale of a replacement package. and the teacher can run a july 10 "art of the nuc" class for new or timid that wanted a refresher and make more $$ as well.

    The queens raised from the cells don’t need to prefect, or bomb proof TF stock as they are not being sold as such. They just need to be better than the queens in package bees, and in a lot of places that shouldn’t be too hard.
    Now you have set up a culture based on local and sustainable beekeeping, keep that up for a few years and you will change the beekeeping landscape in your area.

    From there focuses on increased mite resistance and getting people involved, sure, but really getting the area to turn over to local adapted stock is huge step in the right direction as your stopping the intrusion of poor gentinicks in to the area to aid that breeding program.

    And if the students are taught to do rolls and only treat if needed (sold as Resistance stock, not TF) you have created an army out there checking for resistance, one that can tell you "hey, I think we have something here, come take some grafts form this stock "
    a beekeeper with only one hive might be the one with the biggest ‘pot of gold’–everyone should screen their hives for mite resistance, no matter how small they are.”
    -John Kefuss

    This whole processes can be driven by one or two people in an area choosing to make cells available and doing a little bit of out reach to the other stakeholders. In many cases (as MP notes) groups fail, individuals succeed.

    edit
    Perhaps part of the problem is that people aren't educated about the need to support local genetic diversity and local adapted bees by supporting local bee breeders.
    spot on
    Last edited by msl; 05-11-2017 at 01:04 PM.

  14. #53
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    As I said, did that years ago. Spent huge $$. Spent huge time. Nothing happened.

    And, what about the Ohio program? They had a good organization, broke the state up into regions, tried sharing stocks. Nothing happened and the program fell apart.

    And, what about the Northeast Bee Breeders started by Bjorn...formerly a member here. What happened? Nothing happened and the program fell apart.

    So, you can see my negative attitude about setting up a local, regional, or national breeding program. That doesn't mean I wouldn't try again, but not until a serious, knowledgable, experienced group of queen breeders showed some degree of commitment to the program.
    We the Maumee Valley Beeks just had Dwight Wells as guest speaker and I don't know what program you are talking about, but the "heartland honey bee breeder association" is working hard on their resistant stock in co-op with Purdue University and the Try-State beekeepers.

    Christian

  15. #54
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Illinois has a little-known group of queen breeders. I've not dug into it very far other than finding a list of them online.

    My own apiary is diverse with bees I've caught or cutout from several different towns around east central Illinois. Nature does the sorting.
    Should post some pictures of frames from a few of my best babies. Solid.
    There are very good bees right in your own neighborhood I bet.
    Internet credibility is an oxymoron

  16. #55
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Indiana also has the IQBA - Indiana Queen Breeders Association - which is also associated with Purdue University. So there are groups out there. Time will tell whether or not they can be successful.

  17. #56
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Most of the swarms I speak of are of unknown origin - feral mutts. I've pretty much given up on collecting stray swarms - as I said, time after time they are a waste of time, effort, & resources. I'll make an exception if they are easily gotten & drawn out comb is needed. That's about all they are good for - a season of comb drawing.
    feel bad for you. Colorado must only be good for the skiing and smoke

  18. #57
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Don't feel bad for me. I don't smoke, or do the slope dope. The elk hunting and fishing, on the other hand, is fabulous - if you know where to go.

    My BF production hives have averaged 200 lbs, per, for the last two years. 100-150/per, over the decades. Well worth the cost of replacement queens every 2-3 years.

    It's probably just dumb luck - nothing to do with superior genetics or not wasting time & resources on feral mutts.

    Wait, I've proven that to myself, time, after time, after time, after time...
    After 40 years of beekeeping, I've come to realize that the bees can fix most of my mistakes.

  19. #58
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by ch.cool View Post
    We the Maumee Valley Beeks just had Dwight Wells as guest speaker and I don't know what program you are talking about, but the "heartland honey bee breeder association" is working hard on their resistant stock in co-op with Purdue University and the Try-State beekeepers.

    Christian
    Something years before that. But it's great that Dwight and others are trying to propagate healthy bees. I know Dwight, and think he's working very diligently on his breeding program. I'm sure he can come up with some very good stocks. But to take that stock and take it out of his management almost it insures it will fall apart. This has ben going on forever. A beekeeper has stock that has been propagated over many years, and is so good for that beekeeper in his area under his management. The beekeeper passes and the stock is gone. Or it is shipped far and wide but is lost through out-crossing with inferior stock. It has happened so often that the list is way long.

  20. #59
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    The elk hunting and fishing, on the other hand, is fabulous - if you know where to go.
    i forgot about that, always wanted to make that trip

  21. #60
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    Default Re: Why haven't we put together groups of beekeepers to breed mite resistant bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Colobee View Post
    My BF production hives have averaged 200 lbs, per, for the last two years. 100-150/per, over the decades. Well worth the cost of replacement queens every 2-3 years.

    It's probably just dumb luck - nothing to do with superior genetics or not wasting time & resources on feral mutts.
    The genetics of the feral bees in your area must be quite different than the genetics of your commercial bees. To me, that is interesting. I don't know how many hives you have. If quite a few, I'm surprised that the genetic footprint of commercial bees on the feral mutts where you are is not greater. Some folks say that they cannot raise treatment free bees because of the effect that area beekeepers have on local genetics.
    David Matlock

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