Drone Colonies

Discussion in 'Raising Queens' started by rail, Nov 5, 2012.

  1. rail

    rail New Member

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    What size hive is needed for a drone colony? I would assume there is a ratio of drone to worker bees for a proper drone colony to open mate queens and/or saturate an area with drones?
     
  2. Crofter

    Crofter New Member

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    Wouldnt it depend on how many feral or competing kept hives there were in a given range. I think you could open mate with a much lower number than if you wished to saturate or drown out other than your supplied drones.

    Ideally the virgin queen should also be fertilized with as many genetically diverse drones (in regard to both the queen and to each other).

    This is interesting because I am considering raising some queens and as far as I know there will be no bees other than the three hives at the one location. (at least within 5 miles) These three hives all came from one breeder so I dont know if I have much diversity to start with.
     

  3. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    http://www.beekeepingforums.com/threads/7688-Diploid-Drones-In-Breeding

    This is a thread on Diploid drones and what results from brother sister Drone Queen interaction.
    If you had a queen from a non related line you could minimize the drones from the queen colony by removing all comb with brood cells and giving those frames to the drone colonies.

    Crofter Depending on the size of the queen breeder you got your hives from whether the queens are sisters and so their sons would all share half the same DNA?
     
  4. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    may I assume your question is about the relative volume of the boxes?

    in almost all cases I have witnessed most drone type hives a very robust 2 story + hives. you are really choosing part of the mating mix here and so you want to have very populated hives and more important queens capable of filling those boxes.
     
  5. d.magnitude

    d.magnitude New Member

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    Besides thinking about the size of the drone colonies, you need to consider the quantity of drone colonies in an area to provide saturation (if that's what you're going for).

    I've read a bit from Connor and from Spivak about required drone colony numbers. Check out this thread, I think I quoted some numbers in post #6.

    -Dan
     
  6. rail

    rail New Member

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    Yes, volume of boxes. Example; if I use a 13 frame 9 5/8" deep chamber how many drone frames should be used?

    Also, I assume that it takes a lot of workers to take care of the drones?
     
  7. rail

    rail New Member

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    Ok, I asked before checking the books.:idea:

    Brother Adams, "restricted the production of drones to two-thirds of one comb per colony, apart from the drone comb found normally in colonies."
     
  8. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Rail, I don't think you are that far from Triad Bee Supply. They will be running about 150 hives during mating season. I don't think you need worry about drones.
     
  9. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    I think Iddee is suggesting that you may have a similar situation to my own rail which is I have all around me yards of bees own by a well know Texas treatmentless queen rearing family and thereby do not need to worry so much about producing drones in large numbers myself. I do keep several drone production hives here at the house but likely do not need to do so. Drone producing hives are a good place to reuse old comb with lots of drone cells.... since typically drones are produced at the edges of the brood nest frames should be place above and to the outside edges of the boxes.

    in regards to the situation Iddee suggested Google Earth or Map Quest provides a good means of actually checking just how far away other folks are maintaining hives and how much distance is actually involved between the queen rearing nucs and the potential source of drones.