Is the egg or the drone more important?
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  1. #1
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    Default Is the egg or the drone more important?

    I looked through the forum and I didn't see this question asked, so I apologize if I missed it.

    Does the larva determine more of the future queen's genetics or does the drones that the virgin queen mates with? For example, if I graft from an Italian queen but have Italian, Carniolan, and Saskatraz drones flying around, will the queen take on more of the Italian queen's genetics since that is where the larva came from?

    The reason I ask this question is that I'm trying to figure out if it matters where I graft from (Italian, Carniolan, or Saskatraz) or if I should just graft from a single dedicated hive and the queens will share a mix of all of these genetics.

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    Your question may not be clear.
    The queen's genetics are determined by her parents, not the drones she mates with.
    So the larvae has all the genetics already established.
    The genetics of the colony she leads are determined as a mix of hers and the drones she mated with, each worker being the product of her genetics and the particular drone sperm that fertilized the egg.
    That is why you will see different colors of bees in the same hive.

  4. #3
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    I recently grafted from a very gentle Saskatraz queen and 6 out of the 7 queens were mated. When doing hive inspections I noticed that 4 of the queens are very gentle and the other two are more aggressive. They are the type of bees that come pouring out of the hive when you pop the top and you have to give them a few minutes to release their rage and calm down before dipping your fingers in the hive. If I understand your response correctly, these 2 queens may have mated with drones from a more aggressive hive; therefore, impacting the temperament of the hive. is that correct?

  5. #4
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    The reason I ask this question is that I'm trying to figure out if it matters where I graft from (Italian, Carniolan, or Saskatraz) or if I should just graft from a single dedicated hive and the queens will share a mix of all of these genetics.
    basic selection is if you wish to change/improve 2-3 out of 100 queen are worthy of being a breeder queen. Your can make some limited progress with the top 16%. if you just pick random queens and let them mate with random drones you won't get any were

    recently grafted from a very gentle Saskatraz queen and 6 out of the 7 queens were mated When doing hive inspections I noticed that 4 of the queens are very gentle and the other two are more aggressive.
    what you likly have is a hybred production queen (f-1)
    look in to f-2 aggression
    |http://www.dave-cushman.net/bee/f2aggression.html
    https://oxnatbees.wordpress.com/2017/02/16/angry-bees/
    https://www.beesource.com/forums/sho...-F2-aggression

    how recentily did you graft? has the new queens gentnics taken over the hive yet ie 9 weeks from laying or so
    "oh well, let us stick to science. let them have their beliefs and intuitions!" -Medhat Nasr

  6. #5
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    Quote Originally Posted by abingaman View Post
    I recently grafted from a very gentle Saskatraz queen and 6 out of the 7 queens were mated. When doing hive inspections I noticed that 4 of the queens are very gentle and the other two are more aggressive. They are the type of bees that come pouring out of the hive when you pop the top and you have to give them a few minutes to release their rage and calm down before dipping your fingers in the hive. If I understand your response correctly, these 2 queens may have mated with drones from a more aggressive hive; therefore, impacting the temperament of the hive. is that correct?
    Hold it ....

    Queens aren't themselves aggressive - it's the worker-bees they produce which can be aggressive. But - it takes time for her bees to come on-line, and for the bees with which you made-up the nucs (I assume you made nucs) to die-off. You'll only get to know the behavioural characteristics of those new colonies some 6 to 8 weeks following the first eggs being laid. In the meanwhile, any adverse behaviour is the result of the queen (and drones) which produced those bees.
    It's very easy to jump to these kind of conclusions - I still make this mistake from time to time - and have to remind myself ... those are not her bees (just yet).
    LJ

    Just spotted that msl covered this point at the end of his post - oh well, I'll let this post ride anyway ...
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  7. #6
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    Eh, you have a good point on letting the new queen's genetics take over. The first batch of the brood has just been sealed so to answer your question, with embarrassment, no. The hive wasn't aggressive until the queen was mated and this might be the result of false causation. This a classic example of an assumption clouding my logic.

    If I understand your post correctly, to really change the genetics of a queen, you have to limit the drones they mate with, which makes sense. With random drones flying around, there is no way for me to control anything outside of grafting the larva from a specific hive.

  8. #7
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    Yeah, I jumped to a hasty conclusion! I should have known better, but I got excited because I was able to graft and see the process the entire way through. The first time I grafted, was a bit of a disaster and the larva I did get in the cups, the bees cleared them out and ate them. In my defense, I also had three kids with grafting tools trying to help me, lol. We had larva flying all over the place.

  9. #8
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    The genetics of any livestock are the queen, bull ect. Are 50% of the queen, and the other is mixed in from multiple matings from various drones. Any good queens, are the best to breed from. You just can't control the drones flying around that mate her. Control what you can, don't sweat what you can't. I'd say a very good queen is going to produce good offspring 50% of the time. I raise black Angus, and the best herd improvement is 50% from the bull. You keep the best, and move out the rest. Don't keep the culls. With an insect, hard to control, just do the best you can with queen selection, and it gets better over time. You just gotta work on the queen line. 2 brood cycle is where you will see how here spawn improves, or determines how the hive is. Just my thoughts.

  10. #9
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    Quote Originally Posted by abingaman View Post
    I looked through the forum and I didn't see this question asked, so I apologize if I missed it.

    Does the larva determine more of the future queen's genetics or does the drones that the virgin queen mates with? For example, if I graft from an Italian queen but have Italian, Carniolan, and Saskatraz drones flying around, will the queen take on more of the Italian queen's genetics since that is where the larva came from?

    The reason I ask this question is that I'm trying to figure out if it matters where I graft from (Italian, Carniolan, or Saskatraz) or if I should just graft from a single dedicated hive and the queens will share a mix of all of these genetics.
    And so - what is your end goal as you define it?

    Once you have a clear end goal you steer towards, that will define most of your answers right there.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  11. #10
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    When did we switch to talking about cattle? First Rich brings up his Angus cows and bulls , now Greg wants the OP to "steer" towards a clear end goal. I don't think steers add much to the genetic pool.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  12. #11
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    Default

    In my defense, I also had three kids with grafting tools trying to help me, lol. We had larva flying all over the place

    😁

  13. #12
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    Default

    To put it simply.....
    You want to pick the Queen whose traits you like best, to use for rearing more queens. Maybe 4 of your queens have gentle hives but one of those knocks it out of the park in Honey production also. Or one has always been lower in mite count for no known reason. Or one hive seems to fetch your slippers in the morning ......pick traits that you like best and use that Queen. And it's always good to add more genetics in your apiary thus giving you more queens to choose from and you will continually replace the bad traits with the better traits through the queens that you produce.

  14. #13
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    Default Re: Is the egg or the drone more important?

    Quote Originally Posted by abingaman View Post
    I looked through the forum and I didn't see this question asked, so I apologize if I missed it.

    Does the larva determine more of the future queen's genetics or does the drones that the virgin queen mates with? For example, if I graft from an Italian queen but have Italian, Carniolan, and Saskatraz drones flying around, will the queen take on more of the Italian queen's genetics since that is where the larva came from?

    The reason I ask this question is that I'm trying to figure out if it matters where I graft from (Italian, Carniolan, or Saskatraz) or if I should just graft from a single dedicated hive and the queens will share a mix of all of these genetics.
    Keep in mind abingman, that a Queen would typically have 18-30 drones mated with her.
    So the "larvae" could have 18-30 different baby daddies, these patra lines all exist in a hive.
    now your graft, succeeded and mates and starts to lay, she could have 18-30 drones mate with her as well.
    so the grand daughters from 1 queen could have 18-30 X 18-30 different patralines.
    It is not this crazy in nature as several of the drones could be from the same source IE she mate with 6 Italians and 4 Carniolan , and 5 Saskatraz

    Once she "starts" laying her first born are 21 days out, bees tend to live about 6-8 weeks, so to truly understand her offspring one would need to wait about 2 months after she starts to lay as then the bees would mostly be hers.

    If you graft you could make a few extra and then in 2 months if there are mean hives cull those queens and combine.

    As well, As I understand your drones are not in the fight unless, there are no others.
    the new queen flys low and out 2 miles or so, she then goes up to the DCA level, mates and comes back.
    This is to insure inbreeding is not the primary mode. We do not completely know which way she would go so in a 3 mile radius what are the bee types is a better value than in your yard. Some that seek to have an impact ,will have drone mothers in several Apiaries around the mating yard, a mile or 2 or 3 out, to insure they have some input on the DCA.

    good luck with your new queens.

    GG

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