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Does anyone here in manitoba have any experience with Buckfast queens? Need some advice, if they are a good quality queen or not?
 

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Does anyone here in manitoba have any experience with Buckfast queens? Need some advice, if they are a good quality queen or not?
Guess it depends on the source. Ferguson has not answered multiple emails this spring, so I'm guessing he is not doing queens this year, I have heard he only did a few last year. At Apimondia the University of Guelph folks told me they are no longer shipping queens. Those were the two sources I knew of in years gone past. There was an outfit from Italy at Apimondia, they have a permit to import 5000 queens this year, the fella from Dancing Bee took them all. The folks in Italy are calling them Buckfast and they have pedigrees on the website from the original European breeders they sourced stock from. The pedigrees suggest they sourced from other well known breeders over a period of years as they slowly moved to just using their own lines derived from that stock.

Will the bees from Italy even arrive this year ? I dunno, but if they do, I have my name on the list to take a handful. We were originally told they would be in for late April, that's since been delayed to late May. Time will tell. There are no flights from Italy to Canada going right now, and Air Canada schedule doesn't show anything on the books till later in June. My guess is, if they do arrive, they will be coming thru a long round-a-bout routing that has them in the cages in transit for a few extra days.

I do know that folks I've talked to that got bees from Ferguson in the past always had good things to say about them. I've never found anybody that actually got queens from the UofG folks. The queens coming from Italy are a new thing, so nobody will have any hands on experience with them. Other than those, I dont know of any more sources for Buckfast derived bees in Canada.
 
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