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3/6/18 Meeting Presentation


I would like to thank everyone involved in bringing in the speakers last night. That was a terrific presentation! I felt like their research was unique. Their presentation still provided great insight into current issues facing honey bees. I spoke with Esmaeil after the event, and discovered great info regarding bee breeding for small-scale beekeepers.

Esmaeil elluded to the fact that drone sources infected with viruses were just as important as queen rearing sources infected with viruses. I think this is especially important for all the back-yard beekeepers in our area who try to rear some queens including walk-away splits and natural supersedure. Since no one in our area has isolated bee yards, we're dependent on our neighbors! If our neighbors aren't treating for varroa mites, they could be allowing vectors for viruses. I would think this also affects mite tolerant stocks, as the mites can still transmit viruses.

I’m sure most of us are guilty of not treating timely or effectively in the past. I know I am. However, Esmaeil’s research is a great reminder to do so. Esmaeil said the number one problem is not treating early enough. Additionally, once the virus is transmitted, it seems tough to recover from those viruses.  My takeaway was that requeening is a temporary solution. It also sounds like the comb really needs to be replaced, and even then, you still have sick bees. As with most things, it seems like prevention is the best method!

Thanks again for the wonderful presentation!

One thing that would help is for us to create a Google Map that we can share.  If we all put our hives on there, then we can identify the members that are close.  We can also then make a note where we see hives and pretty soon, we should be able to start to identify the hives that will affect our breeding.  One of the suggestions from the state beekeepers meeting in New Bern was to offer to give queens to neighboring beekeepers if their drones will be mating with your queens.  By doing this we can all start to improve our genetics.

Ken, I agree with all of that!

A Google map would be fantastic! I've used hive tracks, which kind of does that, but I don't think there is a great deal of participation in our area...Please let me know if you start one, or if there is anything I can do to help facilitate that. Maybe the new email list will help.

Regarding queens, I think the give-away is a great solution! In one of Randy Oliver's presentations, he talks about that. That's how he has improved the genetics in his county in CA. He buys/identifies breeder queens, grafts, and then gives away queens through his local beekeeping association.

I'm going to try to get a few queens from someone in eastern North Carolina that worked for Michael Palmer. He is in Grad school for entomology at Univ. of Maryland, and produces 500 or so queens each year. I think his breeder queens came from Palmer. In 'third-grade' style, I cold-contacted him on Facebook and asked him to be my friend. I suspect he'll have some queens around mid-late April. If anyone is interested, let me know. I may be able to get a few for you. I can certainly ask.

I plan to produce a few queens for myself this year. I successfully grafted a few last year, and I've upped my 'mating nuc game' this year...I'll be happy to give some away, if I have them.


I went ahead and created a gmail account and with it a Google Map with my hives on it.

We are going to try and raise queens this year as well.  Cheryl took the grafting class that was offered last year, and she took the follow up class in New Bern this month.  I think we may also do some OTS splits as well this spring .

That's great Ken! I created a map instead of just the locations. That way, folks don't have to login. You may want to delete the post above with account and pw info above...just to keep an internet troll from emailing people from that address. Here is a link to the map: ***edited "contact RCBA for access to the link". Anyone should be able collaborate using that link. I've already added my locations and Ken's. Please put the name of the town/city in parenthesis in front of each apiary's description. Also, in the details box, please put your actual name (first and last). Then, people can search the map by your name or apiary name. Maybe after we get an email list, we can invite all of the users to see the map via email.

Ken, do you think we should do it differently?


Check out the app hive tracks. I think it’s kinda what your looking for.

I didn't realize that you could create a map like you did, that is better than shared account.  I will see about deleting it.  Hive Tracks is a great tool, but not everyone will want to put their information out that publicly.  This map will allow individuals to put their hives on the map, and not have the whole world able to see it.

One other thing is if anyone sees apiaries that are not listed, we want to get them mapped.  I know there are other apiaries around some of my hives that aren't on the map, and may belong to beeks that aren't members of the club.


Be careful with that one, Ken. You list a neighbor's hives without his permission and they get stolen, you could be facing a lawsuit.

Yeah, I think Hive Tracks is a great tool, unfortunately most beekeepers aren't using it, so it limits it.

Ken, I understand the dilemma of listing all the apiaries. It seems like it would be best handled word-of-mouth, in asking other beekeepers if their apiaries could be listed. In the case of stolen hives, I think it would be tough to pinpoint the map as being the source of info that led to hive theft. A thief could use word-of-mouth and google maps to find the location as well. If we can come-up with a system where beekeepers can get access to the map, only if they are willing to link their own apiary, that would be ideal. I can actually pull the link above as well, so it's only shared privately within the club...