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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
so when queens are out mating, what are the % of drones in the air that might come from a neighboring hive? I have queecells from calm hives and i want to keep them calm..

but i have a very angry hive in my yard that i am replacing the queen with in a couple of days…

but just curious what the % of bees could be from that hive mating with a normal euro queen.. i remember reading somewhere that even if u had 20 hives in a yard, the # of drones in the air from your own hives is always very small…

just wondering...
 

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Re: raising queens next to AHB...

I think you meant, AHB (Africanized Honey Bees), not abh.

I am in the heart of AHB territory. Or so I've heard said. All I know is that many colonies of honey bees, in my area, especially those that are feral, exhibit many undesirable traits, so I assume they are likely tainted by AHB genetics. I don't need to bother testing them, I simply replace any that exhibit any undesirable traits.

I can't really answer most of your questions, but I will try.
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Here in Tucson, I work to maintain as many EHB traits, especially fecundity and gentleness, as I can. I encourage my best colonies to produce drones, and to spread into the area by swarming. Whenever a colony seems to acquire any undesirable traits, I immediately remove their queen and replace her with a cultured queen cell.

I can't really give any accurate statistics or percentages, just that I mark each queen as soon as she has begun laying. Then I keep an eye on them, because usurpation by invading AHB queens is all too frequent.

And, too, it is said that virgin queens do their best to fly to DCA's that have the fewest drones from their own hive.

I have managed to keep most undesirable traits, out, for several years, now.
 

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Re: raising queens next to AHB...

I encourage my best colonies to produce drones, and to spread into the area by swarming.
Joseph, I'm a pretty new beekeeper in Central Texas. Every time I've had a hive raise their own queen, the brood turns out somewhere between grumpy and down-right mean. Can you talk a little more about how you encourage your best colonies to produce drones. Do you just put in frames of drone foundation? When do you do that?

Thanks!
 

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Re: raising queens next to AHB...

His area is probably a little less infested than yours. That & trying to influence the neighboring feral colonies with drones, & swarms helps a little.
 

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Re: raising queens next to AHB...

You could use an excluder to keep the drones in the hive.
At best, this is a temporary solution. Drones will kill themselves trying to escape, eventually clogging the excluder. Also, drones drift at a very high rate. Typically, 30 to 50 percent of the drones in a given colony in an apiary did not originate in that colony.
 

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Re: raising queens next to AHB...

To encourage drone production, I use some foundationless frames. I use some Pierco green plastic drone frames, and I use some beeswax drone foundation. Most important, since the majority of my frames are 1-1/4" spacing. I make sure there is plenty of space on each side of the drone comb I place in the center of the brood nest.
 
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