NEEDS AN INTRO
Nordic brown bees are rather rare and your neighboring beekeepers are likely keeping other subspecies or lines of bees, like Italian, Craniolan, or Buckfast bees. This increases the risk of uncontrolled cross-breeding occurring, which should be avoided, since crossbred bees sometimes exhibit aggressive behaviour and ultimately are harder to manage.
A colony with a purebred queen MEANING ALSO "PURE_MATED"? will always produce purebred virgin queens. The drones from this queen will also always be purebred. In other words, the drone is a genetic copy of its mother and has no genes from the father at all. The signs of cross-breeding show in the worker bees who have both the maternal genes from the queen and the paternal genes from drones that represent some other subspecies.
Besides resulting in the loss of the potentially unique Nordic Brown bee genotypes, cross-breeding is the main cause for the unfavorable properties of impure A. m. mellifera bees. The colonies behave aggressively and they have a high swarming tendency. For this reason, the beekeeper has to avoid cross-breeding and ensure the queens’ pure origin and mating.
To avoid cross-breeding:
- get the A.m.mellifera queens from a queen breeder who has arranged isolated mating for queen production
- always change the freely paired queens after the first generation to purebred queens
- arrange a purebred mating station for your queen production
- remember that the original pure A. m. mellifera drones are still present in the second queen’s generation regardless of the mating combination
- artificial insemination can be used for pure mating, if an isolated mating area cannot be arranged