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A few years ago all of my colonies were descendants, by walk-away splits, of one colony I cut-out from beneath a neighbors mobile home. Many of them exhibited various undesirable traits that I attributed to the possible influence of AHB, which are said to inhabit my region of Arizona. Most of these undesirable traits, fortunately, did not often include excessive defensiveness. Several times I considered sending samples of my various hives to the bee labs for identification of AHB. I never did get around to doing that, instead I came up with a plan to import Cordovan Italian queens from various commercial queen sources and breed additional queens from them to free my colonies from these annoying traits.

Now it is a pleasure to work my bees. The only time I experience any annoying traits is with some new swarms. Requeening with queens I raise myself, works like a charm.

I have learned to make nucs and raise queens - two things I rarely ever did before. Now that I have taught myself to do them, I am grateful to those annoying bees for providing the incentive for me to learn these new beekeeping skills.
 
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