Re: I want in
1# that depends if you take a cold turkey bond or an IPM path
The question is how do I start this transition? What are the steps in doing this? How do I determine sources and methods? What losses can be expected?
2# breed from the top 5% or less of your queens, requeen at least the bottom 60% (ish numbers) Sam Comfort started with 5 chosen from over a thousand, Bweaver bonded a thousand to find 5 (then bonded a thousand more), Kefuss some times chose only a single breeder and re-queened heavy. Surviving a winter is not enuff, it needs to be the best and you need to requeen the advrage.. A split program like OTS can prop up the stock, but it breeds form the advrage. Fine for getting your numbers up, but very poor for selecting traits and shifting them in your stock and leads not only to a lot ho-hum queens, but pisspoor drones as well
3# unknown TF is highly locally and beekeeper dependent..
4# High if you go bond, for at least for the first few years if you have a large enuf stock size, If you don't, and end up having to bring in replacements you can get stuck on a tread mill making no progress.
Here is a guy speaking at the organically manged conference this year who lives about 200 miles from you, has lost a few hundred hives over the past few years, constantly bringing in replacements from his dads stock and is down to 7 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zPn-uUmbZwY.
Being able to mass propagate seems to be key for many if you find a queen worth breeding from you need to be able to exploate it or other wise breed from the best.. If you take hard losses you need to be able to bounce back, Sam Comfort got ahead by grafting, he turned those 5 hives in to 160 3 frame nucs in 2 months and then grew them out to full size.
isolation from other stocks also seems to have a large impact, not just there genetics, but there mites as well.
Having good records and metrics so you can make sold data based management choices seems to be a winner as well.
a sold local TF stock or Ferals is also a good start..
for some people it just seems to all work out (likely location related) others not so much. There are fokes who succeed with package bees and OTS. If it works, it works let your bees tell you what works and dosent, and if they are telling youit isn't working it time to change things up
Last edited by msl; 03-22-2018 at 08:29 PM.
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