Feeding with supers on?

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by hlhart2001, Jun 22, 2012.

  1. hlhart2001

    hlhart2001 New Member

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    I have a package of bees we hived beginning of May..have been feeding them(quart mason jar...I know I need to get a fancier one...but it works) since then. The second hive body with frames is on(I checked it a week ago and they were drawing out the middle frames)....they are continuing to take the sugar water, but are also very busy bringing in the nectar and pollan. So when I put the super on do I stop feeding...even if they are still taking the sugar water. I figure by the time(if all goes well) they draw out 7 of the 10 frames in the 2nd body it will be dry and hot which would slow down the nectar flow. We have no intention of taking the honey since I want them to have every advantage of making it thru the winter(which usually gets very cold and snowy). So should I continue to feed? Thanks Halley
     
  2. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Terminology.

    All boxes are brood chamber until the one you intend to take as honey. It will be a super. If you want to use 3 or 4 boxes for brood and bee food storage, fine. A super is always for your honey.

    Now, add all the boxes you want for brood and storage, and keep feeding.

    DO NOT feed with supers on.
     

  3. Papakeith

    Papakeith New Member

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    great question! I'm struggling with the same issue.
    I started feeding again last week because they weren't drawing out the comb in the second hive body very quickly and there were little to no reserves left in the hive. I've put out almost 3 gallons of feed this week.
    The day before yesterday I put a medium super on one of the hives. Since I had no plans to sell whatever they may put up there, and pretty much want to encourage the comb building I left the feeder on.

    Now I'm letting them take the last of that feed and will probably take a breather from feeding to help ensure that they don't fill every nook and cranny of the hive with sugar water. I want to make sure that the queen still has room to do her job. So, I'll keep tabs, and if the reserves dip again I'll probably feed again.
     
  4. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Papakeith, with 2 deeps not fully drawn and far from full, you DO NOT want a third box on there. It is an invitation for pests. Remove it until the 2 deep hive weighs 100 lb. or more.
     
  5. Papakeith

    Papakeith New Member

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    I will check the weight of the hive. thank you.

    I left out a bit for brevity of the earlier post. It may matter, it may not. But here it is :)

    Of the two packages I have; one had 4-5 frames drawn in the second deep before I started feeding. When I checked two days ago they had drawn comb out on all but the two outside frames of the second deep. I should mention that I didn't inspect the bottom deep this time but a recent inspection showed it to be all but full of comb, eggs, brood with little in the way of stores. The second is the one that is lagging and had hardly built out one frame when I started feeding. That one is up to approx. 6 frames. This hive has no super on it.

    When I saw 8 frames built up and them working on the last two I figured it was time to put the super on.
     
  6. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    ""When I saw 8 frames built up and them working on the last two I figured it was time to put the super on""

    That is correct, IF all drawn frames are full. You don't need to add a super if they have 10 empty drawn frames of comb.
     
  7. Papakeith

    Papakeith New Member

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    ahhhh, gotcha. I need to check not only for comb build up(out) but whether or not they are using it yet.
     
  8. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    OR, if they have filled and emptied the older stuff.
     
  9. hlhart2001

    hlhart2001 New Member

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    Great..thanks for the answers and the clarification on "supers"...so ours will not have any supers it will be all brood boxes(2 deep and 2 shallow) since we are not taking the honey. I woke up thinking/worrying about this(bees my new obsession:)...lots to learn. And since we are on feeders...what is your favorite feeder?
     
  10. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    My favorite and yours will likely differ. :D

    I prefer boardman feeders, about 6 of them,lined up on my back porch and feeding all bees within a half mile or more. Easy to monitor and refill.

    For you, I would recommend a top feeder.