Is it time to stop importing live bees?

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My point is that any beekeeper in most parts of the country should be able to produce reasonable bees that aren't too swarmy, don't follow and sting and get a reasonable amount of honey without needing to buy new queens in each year from overseas.

My location isn't brilliant - monocultures and such-like. However with the potential of increased woodland in the country, to absorb carbon, maybe we will see better forage in a few years and we'll get the yield the Germans did 40 years ago! :)

In my neck of the woods I have tried to rear my own Qs. The results are always bad. What ever supplier I use for the mother Q, the daughters always produce bees with undesirable traits, from being very "skittery" on the frames and being very swarmey to being downright nasty stingy beasts that follow you for a long distance. I've posted on here before about a local Beek who likes his bees to be nasty to keep the local vandals away..There is one "strain" of bee I dare not use, the resulting offspring of the daughters are monsters..I'm trying a couple of MBC Qs this year, so far i'm happy with them...
 
Bryant what queens are you buying to rear from, you need to invest in rather better than the standard f1 or first generation queens provided by the majority of sources. If you are purchasing a pure race/strain you can pretty much guarantee the quality of the open mated first generation. As a guide go to the buckfast Denmark web page and you should be looking at the island mated queens. Hive Maker on this site may have some II queens and am sure if you pm B+ on this site he may have some or at least a contact for breeder queens. As an example your first generation queens could be £30-£50 but a breeder could range from say £120 up to many hundreds on the open market.
 
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The Colonsy bees originated in Aberdeenshire. I will not mention the M owrd or the C word but that is where they came from.

Yes they have been tested elsewhere with I believe problamatic results.

My own experience of Amm is they are lovely when they are good and total barstewards when bad. They produce the most beautiful white cappings with the much vaunted airspace underneath.

Very prone to Nosema and other ailments and they don't like being moved around.

About 60% of mine superseded on the Heather.

If the Carnies had the same cappings and the supersedure I would be in bee heaven.

PH

This is what mine produce (Langstroth deeps)
 

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I guess thats one of the main hazards with open mating, no real control on the drones unless you are able to flood the area with 'nice' ones :nature-smiley-016:

True but with a pure race/strain of any flavour you can pretty much be assured of a decent f1 queen. I have 1 site in the middle of surrey that for years has produced decent 2nd or even 3rd generation they are never quite as good but better than the average for sure, they normally get the chop at that point anyway!
 
Bryant what queens are you buying to rear from, you need to invest in rather better than the standard f1 or first generation queens provided by the majority of sources. If you are purchasing a pure race/strain you can pretty much guarantee the quality of the open mated first generation. As a guide go to the buckfast Denmark web page and you should be looking at the island mated queens. Hive Maker on this site may have some II queens and am sure if you pm B+ on this site he may have some or at least a contact for breeder queens. As an example your first generation queens could be £30-£50 but a breeder could range from say £120 up to many hundreds on the open market.

Bryang.... Rob Johnes of Login / Narbeth has some very nice, nosema free, good tempered and productive local Welsh Amm stock, he may even be prepared to sell a queen or two. They will do better for you than any of the imported exotics some beekeepers keep, who are not privalegdged to live in areas that have native bees!

But as has been said repetitively... each to their own!

Chons da
 
Rob Johnes of Login / Narbeth has some very nice, nosema free, good tempered and productive local Welsh Amm stock, he may even be prepared to sell a queen or two. They will do better for you than any of the imported exotics some beekeepers keep, who are not privalegdged to live in areas that have native bees!

But as has been said repetitively... each to their own!

Chons da

Care to put that to the test?
 
No... I have seen Rob's bees and they were very nice.
But by now shirley you would know that I do not import bees?

:calmdown:

Is that so? I remember you talking about various other bees you had used to get your Amm going. Nothing wrong with that but I do think we should keep the story straight

Don't call me Shirley!
 
Do they now have the DNA/Mitochondrial etc proof they are "pure" Amm's rather than simply good natured mongrels????

Of course they don't ....just more "native black bee" rhetoric.

Not published yet but results of DNA analysis of tested colonies have been received by those who sent samples.
 
You seem proud of this pollution, luckily once you've packed it in any unfavourable genes will quickly disappear from the skies unless you find an acolyte to continue the diabolical work. Without continued imports or ii of imported stock the mating advantages native stock has will quickly erase your ill judged meddling.

You have no idea what you're talking about, but, I've come to expect that.
 
You have no idea what you're talking about, but, I've come to expect that.

Does it not annoy you that there isn't excellent amm improved stock for you to piggy back your efforts on? You could then leave a lasting legacy in the gene pool to everyone's benefit.
 
Does it not annoy you that there isn't excellent amm improved stock for you to piggy back your efforts on? You could then leave a lasting legacy in the gene pool to everyone's benefit.

Not in the slightest.
Why would I invest my energy in something I don' believe in?
 
He appears to be leaving a lasting legacy with carnica stock and yes it is annoying that there are not better breeders or amm groups that have not done better improvement programs. I also wonder why if amm is so great why in many parts of the new world it was exported to its found few followers. Also in those new world countries hundreds of thousands of pounds are spent on other races. On the plus side I am trying to liberate a couple of amm queens off probably the best amm breeder in the country atm.
 
Given the comments above in the negative to B+'s efforts that any impact he may have made in his bee improvement programme will be quickly eradicated leaves me with three questions:

1. There was a discussion sometime ago that questioned the integrity of claiming true AMM's actually exist. Do they exist?

and:

2. If such endeavours by B+ et al can be quickly eradicated, what's the fuss all about as any adjustments made will only be temporary surely?

3. This being the case would it not be the same for any similar work on the AMM strain?

Now before some of the usual keyboard warriors start knocking out abuse, these are serious questions.
 
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