The Basic Concept of Honey Bee Breeding Programs

Article Type:
Research/Original Article (دارای رتبه معتبر)

Selective honey bee breeding is a phenomenon that fascinates beekeepers around the world. They often regard it as one of the most enigmatic and complex aspects of beekeeping. Indeed, according to our experiences participating in many international projects, both beekeepers and bee experts without a background in plant or animal breeding often have trouble correctly interpreting and conceptually visualizing the breeding process. These difficulties arise partly because of the complex reproductive biology of honey bees, where queens mate with a multitude of drones. Fundamentally the greatest struggle for people to understand is how selection of animals with preferred characteristics in one generation leads to improved progeny in the next. The leading misconception regarding honey bee breeding is confusing breeding with the simple rearing and multiplication of queens, where individual queens are evaluated predominantly by their egg laying ability and body size. Those two markers of queen quality (fecundity and size) are certainly important for the propagation of queens, but selective breeding requires more than propagation. Selectivebreeding implies the intentional selection for genetic improvement of the population as a whole, with every new generation improved compared to the previous one, ideally for all traits of interest.

Honeybee Science Journal, Volume:14 Issue: 26, 2023
57 to 63  
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