Selective breeding of honey bees

Over the past eight years we have a diagnostic test for disease resistance in honey bees and then attempted to use this test to selectively breed disease-resistant bees. The bees selected in this way appear to not lose other economically important traits (e.g., honey production) but are far better equipped to deal with disease than ‘average’ bees. This then opens up many doors, some of which we would like to pursue here. First and foremost though is to get the tools we have developed into the hands of the bee industry. For this project, we are proposing to work with a handful of early-adopter bee breeders from across the province of BC to start applying these tests in their own operations. The funds here will support the translation of research results into standard operating procedures for the diagnoses and then the actual application of the tests on several hundred colonies from across BC. We will carry this out over these tests over the following three years and work with the bee breeders to simultaneously measure disease resistance in their colonies to monitor progress. [TBC]

Faculty Supervisor:

Leonard Foster


Mopelola Akinlaja


Canadian Honey Council


Biochemistry / Molecular biology






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