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Honey Bee Semen in 130 micro litre Batches

My objective is to provide semen for instrumental insemination that has been, or may have been, collected from a pool of drones that contain many identical alleles. If we were to collect the semen from 8 or 9 such drones (for 8 µl single dose) the statistical chance of the same allele occurring could be unacceptably high, but if the semen came from 130 drones (nominally 1µl per drone) and was mixed, and used to inseminate 15 or 16 virgins then the allele pool in any dose of semen would be richer.

Semen can be thinned and mixed using "Boar Semen Diluent" which I am informed is available in Germany.

A "standard" recipe for semen dilution is:-

1.25% Sodium Chloride
0.25% Dihydrostreptomycin

But information from John Harbo is that "providing the dilution ratio is not greater than 1:1, almost any saline will do".

(John Harbo uses batches of semen up to 200 micro litres)

Settling and/or centrifuging

Semen can be stored for six to eight weeks at room temperature, with a gradual reduction in viability. After 9 months this viability is reduced to 50%. (half life)

Drones do not become properly sexually mature until they are at least 14 days old and have had five good flying days. The proof of drones having flown at least once can be established using a method envisaged by Richard Jackman.

 Written... Winter 2001, Revised (but incomplete)... 22 October 2001, Upgraded... 14 June 2006,
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