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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Tucson, Arizona » Carl Hayden Bee Research Center » Research » Research Project #442563

Research Project: Determining the Effects of Queen Line on Colony Size and Survival After Overwintering in Cold Storage

Location: Carl Hayden Bee Research Center

Project Number: 2022-21000-022-052-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Oct 1, 2021
End Date: Sep 30, 2022

1) Determine if Russian and unselected Italian lines differ in colony size and physiological parameters after cold storage and almond pollination; 2) Determine if Russian colonies differ in overwinter survival and colony size prior to almond bloom when overwintered in CS vs. outdoors apiaries in MS; 3) Compare the profitability of overwintering Russian colonies in CS vs. outdoor apiaries in MS when colonies are used for almond pollination.

In this Plan, we describe an approach for conducting studies to improve overwintering in cold storage by determining the effects of genetic stock. We will compare colony size and survivorship of a Varroa resistant line of bees (Russian bees) and an unselected line (Italian bees) following overwintering in cold storage. Colonies of both genetic lines will be measured again after almond pollination. Our findings will be developed into recommendations for beekeepers that overwinter colonies in cold storage.