Our queens are raised locally in Pennsylvania. We strive to produce and sell quality queens that meet or exceed our high standards. Our stock improvement goals are: mite and disease resistance (VSH), high honey production, and gentleness.
The mother queens are instrumentally inseminated breeder queens from reputable honey bee breeders, such as Dr. Joseph Latshaw (Latshaw Apiaries), Dr John Harpo and Adam Finkelstein (VP Queen Bees), who have extensive backgrounds in bee biology and genetics. We also use survivor queens that have proven their worthiness as breeders (survived at least two winters without synthetic treatments, high honey production and gentle). New stock (with genetics that support our stock improvement goals) is added to our breeding operation each year to propagate our stock, to minimize the chances for inbreeding and to maintain a high level of genetic diversity for optimal colony level performance.
Our breeding apiary is inspected by PA Department of Agriculture twice per year. Additionally, we volunteered in the 2013 National Honey Bee Survey, sponsored by USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), which includes molecular and visual testing.
The daughter queens (production queens) are produced by grafting selected larvae from breeder queen colonies, and placing the grafted cells in well managed starter/finisher colonies to receive optimal care and development. Each produce virgin queen is visually evaluated prior to open mating. All mated queens are evaluated prior to being sold.