|Garrett Dodds currently works for the USDA’s Agricultural Research Services Honey Bee Lab in Baton Rouge, LA as a Research Technician for Dr. Bob Danka. His love of honey bees began around the age of 15 when his Grandfather helped him catch a swarm on their family farm near Bellefontaine Ohio. A few years later he became a County Bee Inspector, a position he enjoyed for over 10 years.
Upon graduation from high school, Garrett began attending The Ohio State University where he worked at the Rothenbuhler Honey Bee Lab under the direction of Sue Cobey. It was there he learned the art and skills needed for bee breeding including queen rearing and instrumental insemination of Honey Bees. After graduating from Urbana University in 2007, Garrett began his career with the USDA where his skills are utilized to assist in the continued research on Honey Bees with Varroa Sensitive Hygiene (VSH) trait developed by Dr. John Harbo.Garrett has assisted on various research projects at the USDA including a large multi-year study on several hundred colonies of VSH bees in migratory pollination operations, the development of a Pol-Line strain of mite resistant commercially desirable bees, a commercial pollination adapted strain of VSH bees, studying the difference between the Freeze killed Brood Hygienic (FKB) trait (Minnesota Hygienic) and the VSH trait. Garrett has also been a part of the work to find genetic markers for Tracheal Mite Resistance, the FKB and the VSH trait.