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I purchased a lone queen from a local breeder last year to do a split. As soon as her daughters began hatching I knew something was different.

These bees are MEAN and that's almost an understatement.

I cannot go within 20 feet of the hive without having a few bees go for my hair or face. When working on the hive, smoke or not, they are bouncing off my veil and when moving my hand over the open hive, any visible bees will swarm to my hand in full attack. When done with the hive, a small group will follow me back to the house and I usually have to walk around for a bit with my suit on until I "lose them".

I also noticed, which is very strange, that these bees seem to work together...when out of the hive. I'll see a group of a dozen or so traveling around the yard looking for water or...whatever they are looking for. I've only ever seen one bee foraging, never a group...before this.

I keep this hive on my property as I didn't want to move it to my apiary since its close to people, so it's my only hive here. It's located about 100 yards from my house up on a little shelf on the mountain I live on. Today I was working in my driveway and they kept attacking me! I had to go inside and even the dog wouldn't come outside.

I'm currently raising queens from my docile stock to replace her. However I'm curious if there are any giveaways to tell if I have AHBs?
 

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Need to have some of them tested, but I have a couple of Italian hives that have the same temperament, so it is possible that you just got an aggressive queen. Go ahead and replace her, but send some of the bees to a lab for testing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Need to have some of them tested, but I have a couple of Italian hives that have the same temperament, so it is possible that you just got an aggressive queen. Go ahead and replace her, but send some of the bees to a lab for testing.
How would I go about sending some in for testing?
 

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According to Dr. Mussen of UC Davis, Africanization is defined by mitochondrial DNA, however, it doesn't really matter since behavior is determined by nuclear DNA! Africanized drones can mate with nice european virgins and aggression seem to be a a highly dominant trait. If your bees are too mean, that is the only test that matters.
 

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Need to have some of them tested, but I have a couple of Italian hives that have the same temperament, so it is possible that you just got an aggressive queen. Go ahead and replace her, but send some of the bees to a lab for testing.
I would concur except for the idea that genetic testing would help resolve your situation which it won't (I'm speaking to the OP). I say this because it seems that you think testing is the next best option when requeening is really the next best option, as suggested by Bee Whisperer. Rather than focus on the genetics of one hive, requeen it and move on. Bees can be nasty whether AHB or not.
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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If they are mean, you need to requeen them. It doesn't matter if they don't have any AHB. Probably it's an F1 cross. The feral AHB in my experience aren't nearly as mean as an F1 cross with a pure EHB. People who keep bringing in EHB keep setting things off by causing more F1 crosses instead of letting the local population settle out. But there is no reason to keep mean bees when you can have nice ones.

http://www.bushfarms.com/beesrequeeninghot.htm
 

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I agree with keeping the nice bees here.
But how do we let the local population settle out? There has to be F1 in the making in order
to get the F2 more gentle daughter maybe. Maybe I am still too new into beekeeping.
Down there is already Africanized bees dominate area.
 

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>There has to be F1 in the making in order
to get the F2 more gentle daughter maybe.

Not necessarily.

"…a continuous range of behaviors and cell size measurements was noted between colonies considered "strongly European" and "strongly Africanized". "

"Due to the high degree of variation within and among feral and managed populations of Africanized bees, it is emphasized that the most effective solution to the Africanized "problem", in areas where Africanized bees have established permanent populations, is to consistently select for the most gentle and productive colonies among the existing honey bee population"—Marla Spivak

http://orton.catie.ac.cr/cgi-bin/wx...ost&formato=2&cantidad=1&expresion=mfn=010125
http://orton.catie.ac.cr/cgi-bin/wx...ost&formato=2&cantidad=1&expresion=mfn=018195

Erikson on AHB:

http://www.beesource.com/point-of-v...strategies-for-africanized-honey-bees-part-1/

AHB already have EHB genes. It's a matter of selection after that...
 

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I purchased a lone queen from a local breeder last year to do a split. As soon as her daughters began hatching I knew something was different.

These bees are MEAN and that's almost an understatement.

I cannot go within 20 feet of the hive without having a few bees go for my hair or face. When working on the hive, smoke or not, they are bouncing off my veil and when moving my hand over the open hive, any visible bees will swarm to my hand in full attack. When done with the hive, a small group will follow me back to the house and I usually have to walk around for a bit with my suit on until I "lose them".
What sort of music do they play?
Do their pants hang so low you see their buttcracks?
 
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