To feed or not to feed..

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by letitbee, Jun 9, 2011.

  1. letitbee

    letitbee New Member

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    I am a newbee and would like an opinion as to wether or not to continue feeding my 2 colonies and also want to know if I should open up my entrance reducers to the biggest opening. I have the small openings with Boardman feeders. It seems when we had a small but intense heat wave, the bees were bearding all day off the bottom board and not getting anything done. It rained heavily last night and cooled off nicely today. Lots of pollen going in the hives today. I guess I should mention that I installed the new packages in new hives on May 19th. I have some capped brood in one hive and alot of uncapped brood in both. They also have tons of pollen and a fair amount of capped honey. They are still taking the syrup but my friend says he stopped feeding his colonies about 2 weeks ago. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. bamabww

    bamabww New Member

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    We're in the middle of an intense heat wave in Alabama. It's been over 95 degrees each day since Memorial day. I was going to help my bees and provide them some feed. I placed about a quart of 1:1 sugar water out near the hive a couple of days ago and they haven't touched it yet.

    So my bees are finding something else to eat. If your bees are still taking the feed, I'd think they still need it.

    Good luck.
     

  3. letitbee

    letitbee New Member

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    I read somewhere on here that they will stop taking syrup when they find something better, but I have seen them cap the syrup, and have true honey in the hives as well. We have a good nectar flow going right now but they still are sipping feed. Could it just be a easy source of water for them?
     
  4. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    You don't say how many frames they have drawn out. If they have 10 frames or more drawn out, it is safe to stop feeding them. Just keep an eye on the supplies and be sure they add to the stores and not deplete them. If the stored supplies start going down, resume feeding. I would remove the boardman feeder the same time I removed the entrance reducer. Otherwise, they may begin robbing.
     
  5. letitbee

    letitbee New Member

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    They had 6 frames drawn out when I checked them on Monday. We had a miserable cold spring and I know they got a late start, but they seemed to really make up for lost time on the nice days. I should also mention that of my two hives, one is a bit behind the other, and that is the colony that is taking less feed.
     
  6. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    I would:

    1..Move the outer drawn frames out one space and replace with an empty.

    2..Leave feeder and reducer in place until 8 plus frames are drawn.
     
  7. letitbee

    letitbee New Member

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    HAHA...I just went outside to do just that and lo and behold the weather cooled off into the low 60s and looks like rain. We are expecting a few more days of rain and cool weather so I am going to wait a few days and see whats going on. As tempting as it is to check the hives often, I have restrained myself and the few times I have been in the hives, I take pictures and study them. I have learned so much on this site, but it seems like I forget what I am supposed to be looking for when I open up the hives. There sure is a lot to learn about those amazing little creatures!
     
  8. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Tell me about it. I've been playing with them for 35 years and sometimes feel like.... I don' no nuffin'...
     
  9. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    a snip..
    I have the small openings with Boardman feeders.

    tecumseh:
    these have got to be the worst thing ever foisted upon a new beekeeper. there are much better way to feed bee than with one of those monsters.

    feed until they are a box of bees. 6 frames gets you about 60% of the way there.