Fact sheet: Mating for queen quality

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Honey bee queens mate with 12 males on average. By mating with a large number of males, queens avoid low brood viability. Additional benefits include increased disease resistance, health, colony homeostasis, survival and productivity. This study has shown that a focus on early-spring production has achieved good results, and similar investment in assuring drone numbers and quality later in the season should now be made.

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