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     On July 12th a momentous event occurred at HAS in Cookeville, TN. Through the leadership of Dwight Wells, a group of northern queen breeders from 9 states formed the Heartland Honey Bee Breeders Cooperative. The newsletter is free -- just subscribe at the sidebar above left. The group is by invitation only until the by-laws are adopted. Please contact us for information about joining. It will publish a quarterly newsletter electronically. To subscribe, please send an email to HHBBCoop@gmail.com

     The purpose of the Coop is to exchange information between queen programs in several states in the north. The initial states are Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Michigan, Missouri, Tennessee, Virginia & West Virginia.

     In addition to the newsletter, the Coop will hold an insemination event each year to make more rapid progress in developing a gentle, productive, disease-resistant, northern queen. At this event, which will be held at Purdue University in June, 2014, members will bring virgin queens for insemination and drone sources. Semen from all drone sources will be mixed and used to inseminate all virgins. This will establish a Laidlaw Closed Breeding Program with several thousand hives used for selection each year.

     All northern queen breeders are invited to join in this effort. -- Dan O'Hanlon, newsletter editor & President -- West Virginia Queen Producers [ www.mountainstatequeens.com ].