Author Topic: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread  (Read 2953 times)

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Offline neillsayers

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #20 on: August 22, 2016, 12:06:29 AM »
 :goodjob:
Neill Sayers
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Online Lburou

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #21 on: August 31, 2016, 02:50:22 PM »
Ef, we are ready for that report you promised....I'm excited to hear about your adventure to our great Northwest.  :)
Lee_Burough

Offline efmesch

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #22 on: August 31, 2016, 09:45:25 PM »
The course has ended and I plan on reporting, but it will still have to wait for a while. At present I'm still in the US, visiting with my sister in NY, but writing on my cell phone.. When I'm back to a keyboard, and a full sized computer I'll be able to chew your ears wih a lengthy report and hopefully be able to include a nice selection of pics.  Please grant me a bit more of your patience

Offline riverbee

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #23 on: August 31, 2016, 10:40:54 PM »
"Ef, we are ready for that report you promised....I'm excited to hear about your adventure to our great Northwest.  :)"

ef,
what lee said and looking forward to your post when you have time!  and thank you ef!
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Online Lburou

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #24 on: August 31, 2016, 11:38:02 PM »
Okay Ef, I'll go to Amazon and buy some patience.    :laugh:
Lee_Burough

Offline efmesch

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #25 on: September 01, 2016, 12:12:25 AM »
If you get it for a good price, place a double order for me.... BUT have it send express--I don't (yet) have the patience for a slow delivery.. 😃

Offline LazyBkpr

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #26 on: September 01, 2016, 12:23:26 AM »
Okay Ef, I'll go to Amazon and buy some patience.    :laugh:

   Ditto... I think this might get EXPENSIVE!!    :laugh:
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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #27 on: September 01, 2016, 02:16:13 PM »
wow

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It is not the road that is hard. 
The road just sits ...
It is how we approach the road that makes it hard.


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Offline riverbee

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #29 on: September 01, 2016, 11:02:27 PM »
i just had a thought,

ef, we need to send sue colby a forum t-shirt?  yes?!   :yes:

and where are you now?
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Offline efmesch

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #30 on: September 01, 2016, 11:54:22 PM »
http://www.asianscientist.com/tag/chinese-academy-of-agricultural-sciences/
Try folllowing this link. The suggested explanation agrees with Sue Cobey's ideas on the importance of genetic variety.
RB, I'm in Cedarhurst, Long Island.
Writing is tough. I can't answer about your suggestion.
More later.

Offline riverbee

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #31 on: September 02, 2016, 10:26:26 PM »
ef, thanks!

i am sending you a pm!
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Offline efmesch

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #32 on: September 03, 2016, 10:59:53 PM »
Okay folks, I'm still in NY, but I just bought a new laptop so once I manage to feel a bit more comfortable with this machine,(I'm learning the setup procedures with Win 10) I'll start posting.  I don't have any pictures here yet and it will take a while to load them up, but I hope my learning curve is a sharp one.

Online Lburou

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #33 on: September 04, 2016, 12:15:28 AM »
Ef, we know you want to be here with us, but we didn't expect that kind, (new laptop), of commitment.  ;)
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Offline LazyBkpr

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #34 on: September 04, 2016, 01:18:54 AM »
What Lee said!
   I bought a LOT of patience from AMAZON.COM so willing to wait now!  Well... ABLE to wait, the willing part is not so flexible.    ;D
Drinking RUM before noon makes you a PIRATE not an alcoholic!

Offline efmesch

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #35 on: September 04, 2016, 10:55:54 AM »
OKAY, here we go.  First, I start with a disclaimer:  A lot of what I write will not be new information to many of you.  I don't have the notebook in which  my grandson took down notes so I'm presenting assorted information as it comes to my memory.  When I get back home I'll ask to look over what was written down and hopefully be able to correct any errors and add information that I skipped.
When raising queens for instrumental insemination, one of the main considerations is the quality and the genetics of the drones chosen to supply the sperm.  Since drones take longer to develop than queens and also have to mature sexually after they emerge, timing of the drone and queen raising process is of the essence.  The general rule is that when the drones start to emerge, that is the time to begin raising the queens.  That way, when the queens  emerge and are ready to mate, the drones will be sexually mature.  Drones that are too young will be unable to provide sperm for collection.

A good deal of time was devoted to learning the process of collecting sperm for insemination.  It's a tricky process.  It's relatively easy to get the drones to evert their endophallus, but if not fully mature, there will be no sperm for collection.  When the organ everts, you have to differentiate the sperm from a viscous fluid that accompanies it and if not careful while collecting the sperm into the glass microtubule, it can easily become plugged up and require cleaning before you can continue.  Sperm is collected from about ten males for each queen to be inseminated.  The evertion process is done by squeezing the drones, first on the thorax and then on the abdomen. That is the easy part.  Collecting the sperm is done under the microscope and requires a lot of practice. 

The microtubules used for sperm collection are first primed with saline solution and to prevent drying out between each drone, a small droplet of saline is added, only to be removed as the collector proceeds from one drone to the next. 
The big "plus" about collecting sperm is that, when done properly, it can be stored at room temperature for up to two weeks and still remain viable.  That means that sperm can be collected in one place, from selected drones, and transported (or even exported) without difficulty, to inseminate virgin queens in distant locations.

More to come.
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Offline Green bee

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #36 on: September 04, 2016, 11:18:56 AM »
 :thread:
Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Albert Einstein

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #37 on: September 04, 2016, 11:40:08 AM »
Great info EF, thank you!

While looking at some bees with our tecumseh, he reached down with a light touch and pinned a drone to the honeycomb.  He explained that a sexually mature drone would 'buzz' when touched in this manner, and an immature drone would not.  That is a way to confirm drones are of sufficient age to mate (or, in this case, donate sperm).  This test in early spring will give you the greenlight to begin grafting or II.

You wouldn't want drones from the same hive or a closely related hive to mate with your open mated queens, but if your drones are mature, drones in your area probably are too.  If your drones 'buzz' when lightly pinned to honeycomb, there will be drones to mate with your queens in your area if you are not fortunate enough to Instrumentally Inseminate your queens.  I hope this is useful and not too far off topic.  :)
Lee_Burough
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Offline efmesch

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #38 on: September 04, 2016, 12:04:12 PM »
Lee, As to relatedness of drones, more on that later. 
But one point is that drones are collected in the hive.  Can't guarantee that they originated from that hive, but the likelihood is about %80.  You can increase that likelihood of getting drones from the hive you chose for drone production by placing an excluder inside the hive, below the super in which the drones are raised or over the entrance to the hive.  That prevents any drone wandering.
As to another method for telling maturity of the males: a mature male will feel hard when applying pressure to its abdomen.  Immature drones are soft.  Of course, the most reliable method of knowing if mature or not is by seeing sperm present.  For that, you have to know how to recognize sperm (a very light, brownish, off-white color) and its location (a  thin layer above the white mucous).  The white mucous is produced by mature and immature males.
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Offline efmesch

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Re: Hold on to your seats before reading . this thread
« Reply #39 on: September 18, 2016, 09:49:20 AM »
I'm back home now, wrting on my "old faithful" computer (the new one has been giving me all sorts of "challenges" so I haven't been using it much) but I'm still suffering from the time-readjustment process, after coming home from NY.  I hope my brain will be lucid enough to be able to say what I want to, clearly.

Lee, I told you "As to relatedness of drones, more on that later."  The time has come.

We all know that workers and queens are "diploid" (having their chromosomes in pairs) whereas drones are haploid, (having only one member of each chromosome).  While the entire set of chromosomes from the drones that mate with the queen is represented in the workers of the next generation,  the queen passes on to her offspring a mixture of chromosomes, some from her mother and some from her father.  That means that we can have a greater control over the genetics of our bees through selecting males than we can by selecting females.  Said differently, drone selection (from hives with the traits we want) can be more effective than queen selection.  However, in IIQ (Instrumental Insemination of Queens) we usually use semen collected from about 10 drones, and obviously, their chromosomes (and DNA) won't be identical.

In many genetic projects, scientists improve  the traits we want to get by controlled mating of selected males with selected females.  These are often siblings with each other and even parent with child.  This, for example,  is done with cattle, chickens, and vegetables to quickly isolate and improve on selected traits. 

However, with bees, we have a different problem.  Robert Page Jr. and Harry Laidlaw Jr., in their article  "Closed Population Honeybee Breeding" report on sex determination in honeybees.  While one gene (composed of two alleles) determines sex, if both alleles are identical, it leads to a non-viable egg.  This will show up  in the pattern of larvae that develop from the brood of a queen.  If her eggs have two differeent alleles for the sex gene, the pattern of developing brood will be solid.  On the other hand, if she has sperm from drones with the same sex allele as she has, her brood pattern will be spotted.  The eggs that didn't develop will be cleared away by the worker bees, leaving empty cells mixed in among the developing brood.     There are some  six to nine different  sex alleles for honeybees and if we select our drones for IIQ from a closed population of bees (drones and queens closely related) we increasse the likelihood of getting these non-viable eggs.

Two considerations of this complicating factor are:
1. While we would like to improve our stock by choosing from related queens and drones, we must always realize that we should look for the desired traits in isolated (distantly located) populations, hoping that, while the alleles for the desired traits will be in both populations, the sex alleles will be different.
2.  Before an IIQ is sold, it MUST be checked for its brood pattern, making ourselves as certain as possible that the mating has not lead to a queen that will lay unacceptable numbers of non-viable eggs.

Thus, a major consideration for IIQ is selecting the sperm donors  from a desirable hive that is "distant" from the queen's hive,

Until now, I had always thought that a spotted pattern of brood was because the queen was a "sloppy" layer,  It turns out that she may have laid a solid pattern of eggs, but, because of the incompatibility of the sex alleles, eggs she laid simply didn't develop.  The upshot of this is to think seriously about replacing such a queen sooner, rather than later (assuming that she has been laying for a while), not just starting,and still produces spotted patterns.
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