- Jan 15, 2014
- Reaction score
- South of Watford
- Number of Hives
Studies ( unpublished) that we undertook statistically comparing wing morphology with DNA from various types of honeybee concluded that although a negative discoidal shift was a good indicator of belonging to Amm, and not Aml or Amc ( ie M group not C group) DNA was the only method to give a definitive answer to how " pure " the particular colony was.... even down to which specific closest type..... Northumberland, Cornish, Irish/French, Scandinavian etc.Thanks for sharing this, totally agree with your philosophies. Last 2 seasons I’ve started to group my colonies into As and Bs, rearing queens from As, maintaining Bs to give them another chance to assess, but not specifically expanding from them. I’ve realised I need a C group for those with 2 years of assessment that I should requeen.
I live 1000ft in the Pennines, your criteria for productivity matches well with mine. Not got into Wing morphology (yet!) but my best colonies are all dark queens which are frugal on winter stores and gentle but good on the heather!
Ive just finished reading Donald Simms book 60 years with bees, was from your part of the country.
Would be interested to know if there is any connection between your bees and his (wondering if his lineage is still around?)
With the constant uncontrolled importation of bees into the UK most colonies will show some level of introgression.... even when keeping bees in one of the few more isolated areas.
If you want to have the DNA from your bees tested, you could contact the B4 project to see if any more studies are planned for next season that you could participate in?