Author Topic: Kona Queens From Hawaii  (Read 60 times)

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Offline Jen

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Kona Queens From Hawaii
« on: January 13, 2019, 11:27:15 pm »
What's the good and bad skinny on ordering Kona Queen's from Hawaii?
There Is Peace In The Queendom

Online iddee

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Re: Kona Queens From Hawaii
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2019, 02:56:05 am »
I like them. Opinion only, no science to back it.
“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.”
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Offline tecumseh

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Re: Kona Queens From Hawaii
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2019, 05:39:53 am »
raised in a magical land with no pest to contend with besides toads... they are a bit like raising children in a bubble under antiseptic conditions...

I have not tried any Kona queens since they have taken on new ownership and management...

ps... I am greatly disappointed in the quality of the queens I have obtained from you own area Jen... not certain if it was the grower or the year (lots of fire and smoke out that way).


Offline Jen

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Re: Kona Queens From Hawaii
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2019, 02:08:22 pm »
Oh Tec! We need to talk about this! Critical that you brought this up now. Our county in upper northern California is now just into our third year with a county bee association. Such a blessing. However, we do most of our business with a company out of Lincoln, California. They truck up our spring pre orders for nucs, packages, and queens.

The owner of this company touts that his hybrid queens are bred to be calm and productive. We buyers are questioning cranky hives, not enough brood over the summer, half the amount of honey stores, and our area has had an unusual amount of absconding this last Fall.

Would you please explain your disappointment in California queens? And did you make any queen purchases from 'A and D Bees' within the last two seasons 2017 and 2018?

Thanks Tec, appreciate your time
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Offline tecumseh

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Re: Kona Queens From Hawaii
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2019, 06:00:34 am »
I am quite up front that I raise my own queens here that I do not treat for varroa.  I also buy queens (25 to 50 at a time), place them in a yard by themselves just to see how they will do.  In the past couple of years I have bought CARNIS and the new version of Varroa resistant hives from Northern California.  The folks (well know but I will not give names) touts them as hardy but raising these  beside my own queens tells me NO.  Even the Varroa resistant variety are not very robust or not mated well enough to last more than a season < I will point here that a failing queen, a queen that is weakly mated or any hive going thru replacement of this kind of queen (and contrary to some folks thinking some hives will and some will not replace a weak queen) will tend to contrary to outright mean.  When you dig a bit deeper you discover that the folks raising the queens replace every queen every year so how they even expect to get to a robust and hardy type of queen I DO NOT KNOW.

This past year I purchased about 50 of the new varroa resistant variety and about half did not survive 2 weeks in queen bank (which suggest poor mating and inadequate QMP for the queens). Normally they would never be banked that long but a spell of bad weather interrupted splitting just after they arrived.  Even the one set into splits were not accepted well...

In prior years I also came to the thought that queens purchased from California were selected based somewhat on their response to 'the syrup bucket' since early on they tended to do well until you forgot to show up one week with syrup bucket in hand.

Not certain Jen about your 'A and D Bees' designation????? But anyway (and more in line with your original question) the Kona queens I have purchased (pre buyout and new owner) were vastly superior to the queens I have bought the past couple of season out of California.

It should be noted that lots of queens are produced for the Almond pollination business and these kind of bees tend to brood up very early and consequently go thru their food resources very quickly..