Striving for racial purity in bees a pointless, counter productive, seriously bad idea?

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madasafish 

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You can't fault the argument, it is really common sense when it comes to inbreeding and benefits of diversity. I think it may vary depending on the size of the gene pool though, you only need to look at the Egyptians to see the result of a limited gene pool.
Or the Hapsburgs.
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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you only need to look at the Egyptians to see the result of a limited gene pool.
Why go that far? Our present Royal family is much closer to home.
(come to think of it, there's a hamlet not too far from me whose residents all seem to have the same great grandmother!!)
 

jeff33 

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Why go that far? Our present Royal family is much closer to home.
(come to think of it, there's a hamlet not too far from me whose residents all seem to have the same great grandmother!!)
😂 I was trying to be politically correct and sensitive by not offending any of our friends from across the bridge who still see any value in the royals...

Most of Gwynedd and Powys also seem to share the same surname!?
 

madasafish 

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Why go that far? Our present Royal family is much closer to home.
(come to think of it, there's a hamlet not too far from me whose residents all seem to have the same great grandmother!!)

Our Royal family now marries Commoners - and not the offspring of their great grandfathers/mothers (Q Victoria) - in an attempt to increase diversity and reduce the impact of mental impairment. Note "attempt"
 

B+. 

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You can't fault the argument, it is really common sense when it comes to inbreeding and benefits of diversity. I think it may vary depending on the size of the gene pool though, you only need to look at the Egyptians to see the result of a limited gene pool.
I think you mean the pharoahs.
I know some very nice Egyptians. They're wonderful people.
 

Murox 

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I think you mean the pharoahs.
I know some very nice Egyptians. They're wonderful people.
Doh.....I thought he was referring to Apis mellifera lamarckii - does not exist in Egypt except in areas in Upper Egypt.
 

jeff33 

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Our Royal family now marries Commoners - and not the offspring of their great grandfathers/mothers (Q Victoria) - in an attempt to increase diversity and reduce the impact of mental impairment. Note "attempt"
I believe they have even failed to grasp ethnic diversity.....
 

Gilberdyke John 

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You can't fault the argument, it is really common sense when it comes to inbreeding and benefits of diversity. I think it may vary depending on the size of the gene pool though, you only need to look at the Egyptians to see the result of a limited gene pool.
As I used to ride Icelandic horses, I immediately thought of Icelandic horses being entirely descended from the first horses taken to the island by the Vikings around 960 AD. Shortly after they set up a parliament that introduced a law prohibiting the importation of any more horses to exclude disease. The risks of breeding from a limited gene pool were countered by stringent control of quality of progeny. Any horse not up to standard for any reason - hardiness, nature, stamina, behaviour etc was ruthlessly culled as it wasn't worth the drain on available food. Nothing was wasted in those harsh conditions and the culled animals provided meat for the human population.
Any horse registered as Icelandic MUST have pure and traceable bloodlines back to Iceland. No crossbreeding is accepted for registration by the breed society. No horse that leaves Iceland is allowed to return and no other horses of any breed are allowed in to continue the exclusion of disease. If you're interested the IHSGB (Icelandic Horse Society of Great Britain) website makes useful reading.
 
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jeff33 

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As I used to ride Icelandic horses, I immediately thought of Icelandic horses being entirely descended from the first horses taken to the island by the Vikings around 960 AD. Shortly after they set up a parliament that introduced a law prohibiting the importation of any more horses to exclude disease. The risks of breeding from a limited gene pool were countered by stringent control of quality of progeny. Any horse not up to standard for any reason - hardiness, nature, stamina, behaviour etc was ruthlessly culled as it wasn't worth the drain on available food. Nothing was wasted in those harsh conditions and the culled animals provided meat for the human population.
Any horse registered as Icelandic MUST have pure and traceable bloodlines back to Iceland. No crossbreeding is accepted for registration by the breed society. No horse that leaves Iceland is allowed to return and no other horses of any breed are allowed in to continue the exclusion of disease. If you're interested the IHSGB (Icelandic Horse Society of Great Britain) website makes useful reading.
Thanks for sharing and interesting concept. I am not too sure that I follow the logic of culling any horse not up to standard? For me (without much knowledge of genetics) that would simply get rid of visual signs of inbreeding as the gene pool remains the same?
 

Beebe 

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Thanks for sharing and interesting concept. I am not too sure that I follow the logic of culling any horse not up to standard? For me (without much knowledge of genetics) that would simply get rid of visual signs of inbreeding as the gene pool remains the same?
I think that when people start drawing comparisons between the husbandry of domesticated, mammalian livestock and that of bees, very little validity can be attached to the conclusions.
 

Mint Bee 

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Thanks for sharing and interesting concept. I am not too sure that I follow the logic of culling any horse not up to standard? For me (without much knowledge of genetics) that would simply get rid of visual signs of inbreeding as the gene pool remains the same?
Culling sub standard animals would simply prevent the genetic material being continued in off spring lines. If inbreeding were an issue then only those animals that were not inbreed or impacted by inbreeding and show standard or superior traits would continue.

In a general way, not that different from only breeding from 'good' queens and fence posting any that fail to produce offspring that meet whatever section criteria is used.

I'm sure the Vikings landing in Iceland would have had a basic understanding of what we call genetics. After all, animal domestication is thought to have started many thousands of years ago
 

Gilberdyke John 

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Thanks for sharing and interesting concept. I am not too sure that I follow the logic of culling any horse not up to standard? For me (without much knowledge of genetics) that would simply get rid of visual signs of inbreeding as the gene pool remains the same?
Why would you want to keep or reproduce an animal that showed substandard traits? Continuing to breed from such animals can only degrade the breed. There's no room for sentiment in the business of improving the required qualities of the animals. During previous years horsemeat was also a valuable addition to the table.
In a similar manner to the racehorse breeding industry a top prize Icelandic stallion can command huge stud fees and owners of highly judged mares will move heaven and earth to put their mares to the best stallions.
 

TryingToLetThemBee 

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I found the argument interesting that since we (almost) all breed hybrids we cannot expect to breed true. But is that true indefinitely? What happens if I breed 10 generations of say cockapoo?
 

jeff33 

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Why would you want to keep or reproduce an animal that showed substandard traits? Continuing to breed from such animals can only degrade the breed. There's no room for sentiment in the business of improving the required qualities of the animals. During previous years horsemeat was also a valuable addition to the table.
In a similar manner to the racehorse breeding industry a top prize Icelandic stallion can command huge stud fees and owners of highly judged mares will move heaven and earth to put their mares to the best stallions.
No you misread, I don't want to keep or reproduce from sub-standard, there is no point if you want to improve! What I meant in a situation like the Icelandic horses is that the gene pool may remain the same even if you cull the substandard ones. I guess there a lot of variables that may influence including the size of the herd, are the herds separated across Iceland, and so forth.
 

Beebe 

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Why would you want to keep or reproduce an animal that showed substandard traits?
I read that apparently, queen-bees allowed to do their own thing will do that thing with around 20 and possibly many more drones. As the queen tends to fly significantly further from home ground than her own drones, she mates with "strangers". In selecting a likely egg to raise as a queen, the workers will choose the ones with the rarest patriline; I'm not sure if that means they choose the ones of which the fewest of their sisters share a father or simply the rarest...maybe the most completely different genetic makeup from the rest of the colony. So bees have inherited behaviour patterns which actively seek maximum variation and minimum inbreeding.

The above behaviours seem incompatible with the concept that we should try to seek, as the title puts it, "racial purity in bees".

As for Icelandic horses, I presume they are a breed and not a sub-species. I know even less about dogs than I do about Icelandic horses and bees, but I am aware that a lot of "pure" breeds of dogs have an inherent propensity to specific health issues which are related to their genetics.
 

TryingToLetThemBee 

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:) the genetics of canines is different and much more easily controlled in anycase.
OK, and since you clearly know more than I do, is it true that we cannot breed honeybees true? That we might as well just play a numbers game, not queen-cull swarms etc etc.? The @Hivemaker. s of this world I suppose are sort of inland Colonsays before anyone cites him at me.
 

Gilberdyke John 

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I read that apparently, queen-bees allowed to do their own thing will do that thing with around 20 and possibly many more drones. As the queen tends to fly significantly further from home ground than her own drones, she mates with "strangers". In selecting a likely egg to raise as a queen, the workers will choose the ones with the rarest patriline; I'm not sure if that means they choose the ones of which the fewest of their sisters share a father or simply the rarest...maybe the most completely different genetic makeup from the rest of the colony. So bees have inherited behaviour patterns which actively seek maximum variation and minimum inbreeding.

The above behaviours seem incompatible with the concept that we should try to seek, as the title puts it, "racial purity in bees".

As for Icelandic horses, I presume they are a breed and not a sub-species. I know even less about dogs than I do about Icelandic horses and bees, but I am aware that a lot of "pure" breeds of dogs have an inherent propensity to specific health issues which are related to their genetics.
Hence the ruthless culling that went on. I wonder if modern sympathies will undo the work of previous generations?
 
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