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Home > International > Breeding and selection > The breeders colonies

The breeders colonies

We rarely use the starter (maybe we are wrong?) .Until 2010, we were using orphan colonies. While today, we changed for a double system which is composed of:

  • orphan breeders on super-frames,
  • breeders on Dadant frames in Cloake Board system. This system allows us to detect the lineages with the best maternal instinct and to select this temper.

Our work with the breeders:

There is 1 or 2 grafting in each breeder:

  • 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday morning), we introduce 2 clips of 14 queens-cell cups containing very young larva grafted 1 hours earlier,
  • meanwhile, we remove the cells’ batch introduced the past week and we place it in the incubator.

Each 8 days, between 2 grafts, we lift up the broods:

  • we take 2 opened frames with their nurse bee (queen side) that we move into the breeding compartment,
  • we move down the 2 frames, now with a capping, lifted up the previous week.

The feeding:

  • At each graft, we put protein dough into the breeders,
  • Depending of the nectar flow conditions, we also distribute ½ to 1 L of diluted syrup or water mixed with honey. Each month, every breeder (orphan or Cloake Board) is treated with oxalic acid to reduce the Varroa pressure.

The behaviour of the breeders:

The royal cells’ production in a Cloake system:

Closed starter:


lexique