Quantcast

how many drones?

Beekeeping Forum

Help Support Beekeeping Forum:

aseeryl 

New Bee
Joined
Jun 21, 2009
Messages
99
Reaction score
0
Location
uk
Hive Type
wbc
Number of Hives
2-4
Last week I posted re dead queen. Following Heather's advice I left them alone. Sunday morning, on schedule, there was a new queen skittering about and a second just breaking out of its cell. I've had another look this morning and the queen is still there and seems lively enough.
Surprisingly, I also saw a drone - drones had previously disappeared - I don't know where this has come from, unless an unnoticed cell or from outside. Anyway, question is, how many drones are usual for mating? I can only see one in the partly full hive but I believe that a central pheromonally induced "bee brothel" may happen and indiscriminate mating can occur. Can anyone enlighten me?
Cheers.
 

jon 

House Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
406
Reaction score
0
Location
N. Ireland
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
40-50
Bees mate sometimes miles away from the hive in a place where drones hang out known as a drone congregation area.
Indiscriminate mating does indeed occur with up to a dozen drones which is why beekeepers are always arguing about imports and the type of bee your neighbour keeps.
 

hedgerow pete 

Queen Bee
Joined
Jan 26, 2009
Messages
3,660
Reaction score
5
Location
UK, Birmingham, Sandwell. Pork scratching Bandit c
Hive Type
national
i would say it was normal for me to have around the 100 to 300 mark when i am breeding, but 20 will do the job but it will limit your options.

jon i used to belive that the queens mated miles away but i find my lot stay local within eye and ear shot around the 20 to 50 metres up mark, i think they say several miles when they had no idea where they went or they had not started the drone cells early enough to service thier queen and was dependant on some one elses drones to work for them, may be wrong but may be its right, i have a very simple rule and that is to never ever that at face value any information that is over five years old or in a book unless it can be backed up by my own experiences, i personaly think the three mile rule is an urban myth
 

Hivemaker. 

Queen Bee
Joined
Nov 8, 2008
Messages
14,310
Reaction score
8
Location
Exmoor.
Hive Type
national
Strange way of thinking that any imformation that is in a book is untrue,if its over five years old,and you have not had personal experiance,makes history books worthless.Do you think the American civil war was true.
 
Last edited:

hedgerow pete 

Queen Bee
Joined
Jan 26, 2009
Messages
3,660
Reaction score
5
Location
UK, Birmingham, Sandwell. Pork scratching Bandit c
Hive Type
national
very funny my point is this after reading a book on bee keeping do not belive that the information is still either relivent or has not been superceded with a better meathod, i have several copies of books with no mention od varroa and one book at the library that has no mention of osr as it was not a viable bee crop when it was writen, and in another clive du bryn book the queen egg laying guide is set at 500 per day, and according to millons of people modered super duper bees lay a set of 11 frames in a 4 day period so i still stand by what i say do not belive anything unless it can be corrobarated with what is in front of you and you can prove it works .

as for the american civil war, it was started when the european settlers threw all the tetlet in to the sea so we went home in a huff but the european settlers were so dim they carried on shooting each over for a few years we then came back sorted every one out world peace rained and then tony blair came along and shoved is head up an orraface and became a lap dog to our european settlers in a apart of our empire, our friends accross the pond have thier accent because of all the cornish settlers we sent there because there was nothing for them to dig in the uk,

ps i dont like americans ever, they shot me and i took it very personaly
 

jon 

House Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
406
Reaction score
0
Location
N. Ireland
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
40-50
jon i used to belive that the queens mated miles away but i find my lot stay local within eye and ear shot around the 20 to 50 metres up mark
HP
I take your point re. the bull which is written about beekeeping but I am not convinced that mine mate so close to the apiary.
All my bees are dark yet I get the odd queen which has offspring which look like Buckfast so I reckon she must have travelled some way to find different coloured drones.
I remember I read somewhere that native type bees can mate close to their own apiary in bad weather but that may well be another urban myth.
Maybe the local Drone Congregation area just happens to be close to your apiary.
If bees mated locally we could all stop fighting about imports.
 

victor meldrew 

Queen Bee
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Messages
6,425
Reaction score
62
Location
Wigan
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
6
Drone congrigation zones can be close to your apiary or indeed miles away.
Think about it, suitable sites depend on various considerations , topography being the main one:), whereever thermals form is a likely spot for local drones to assemble, remember they may have to wait around for hours in the hope of a virgin approaching and still have the strength to beat the opposition to fertilise her madge :).
Drones are as adept at reading the signs as any experienced glider pilot :cheers2:

John Wilkinson
 

oliver90owner 

Queen Bee
Joined
Jul 15, 2009
Messages
15,632
Reaction score
35
Location
Lincolnshire
Hive Type
14x12
Genetic diversity is good. Some books say the queen would mate with drones from other colonies.

Beekeepers try hard at times to retain the original genetic material basically by flooding the area with their own drones from the same colony as the queen originated (reared queens would, by then, be in their own little mini-colony).

This could not be sustained indefinitely. Continual in-breeding is bad (look at pedigree dogs at Crufts!).

Regards, RAB
 

ribblesbees 

House Bee
Joined
Jul 3, 2009
Messages
237
Reaction score
0
Location
Doncaster in GWC
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
1 + 20 or so solitary bees' nests
This could not be sustained indefinitely. Continual in-breeding is bad (look at pedigree dogs at Crufts!).

Regards, RAB
Point taken, but isn't inbreeding due to breeding within the same bloodlines (do bees have blood? - well you know what I mean I hope) and breeding within the same type but different genetic line wouldn't cause the problems that pedigree dogs have, whilst keeping the type going.

bee-smillie
 

jon 

House Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
406
Reaction score
0
Location
N. Ireland
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
40-50
Genetic diversity within a particular type of bee is good.
ie, if you keep AMM it would be good for a virgin queen to encounter a neighbour's AMM drones.
The same for Carnica or any other race of bee
If you get crosses between AMM, Carnica, and Buckfast, the results will be at best unpredictible.
 

Latest posts

Top