Nine different genetic families of honey bees (Apismellifera L.) were compared using summed z-scores (phenotypicvalues) and a modified selection index (Imod).Imod values incorporated both the phenotypic scores of thedifferent traits and the economic weightings of these traits, asdetermined by a survey of commercial Ontario beekeepers. Largelybecause of the high weight all beekeepers place on honey production, adistinct difference between line rankings based on phenotypic scoresand Imod scores was apparent, thereby emphasizing the needto properly weight the traits being evaluated to select bee stocks mostvaluable for beekeepers. Furthermore, when beekeepers who made >10%of their income from queen and nucleus colony sales assigned relativevalues to the traits used in the Imod calculations, theresults differed from those based on weightings assigned by honeyproducers. Our results underscore the difficulties the North Americanbeekeeping industry must overcome to devise effective methods ofevaluating colonies for breeding purposes.
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Vol. 93 • No. 6