Bees Drowning With Internal Feeder

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Hughesie 

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Thanks for everyone's feedback

As I quite like tinkering around with wood, I'm going to make, for want of a better phrase, a set of stairs to go into the frame feeder so the ladies can walk up and down.

Will let you know how I get on
Take a look at Hedgerow Pete's video on frame feeders he put a ramp inside to enable the bees to get in and out.
 

Bryanthebee 

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i bought two poly nuc`s from paynes and the came with a wood ploat in each feeder well.
 
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Lance Hutchings 

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Now up to 8 colonies due to splits and swarms !
I bought a M"""""re Jumbo rapid feeder which is like a big green box with two holes they crawl up and has clear plastic 'cups' over the area the bees feed from so you can actually watch them .. so far used it on serveral hives and not lost a bee .. yet !!

Lance
 

peterbees 

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I complained to Th*rnes about these drop-in feeders last year, after two of our new members had drowned lots of bees in them. Th*rnes said they would fit a label to the feeder explaining how it should be used. I wonder if they have...
 

markp 

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No they haven't. No instruction yet!! Just wish I'd read this thread before ordering two!!
 

djg 

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I agree with Lance Hutchings about the big green feeder from M.

One observation is that black mould formed before the 1:1 syrup was fully taken down earlier this Spring, despite a 1/2 drop of lemongrass oil, when I was feeding up an AS.

Possibly the bucketful of relatively thin syrup in the unseasonably warm weather was too much for the old Q and her fliers to collect before the mould got to it. Maybe a smaller feeder would have prevented the problem.

But its a great bit of kit, for the reasons you state !
 

Headnavigator 

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Lemongrass oil in contact feeder to stop mould? That's a new one on me, any reason why not, anyone? Am not happy with black slimy bits when feeder has only been on there a couple of days.
 

Erichalfbee 

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i bought two poly nuc`s from paynes and the came with a wood ploat in each feeder well.
I have one of these and I painted the inside of the feeder with textured masonry paint.
 

MODNOD 

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I have no experience of frame feeders as I use contact feeders, but a word of warning to anyone contemplating using a 'Drop - in feeder' from T*****s. I used one of these with wet cappings one side and syrup the other using the dual purpose access cover. This is supposed to allow free access to the side with cappings, and only 'climb down' access to the syrup. Unfortunately my girls had not read the instructions and walked over the top of the divider thus falling into the syrup and drowning. I lost about 1,000 bees in a week this way. Needless to say said feeder is no longer used.:smash:
A hand full of straw will sort the drop in feeder.
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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Lemongrass oil in contact feeder to stop mould? That's a new one on me, any reason why not, anyone? Am not happy with black slimy bits when feeder has only been on there a couple of days.
I've been told a bit of thymol in the syrup stops it going mouldy?
 

EDCHEF 

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Same problem here with a plastic frame feeder - bitterly disappointed finding drowned bees on our first inspection despite the presence of a wooden float - should we try a few bits of twig or similar? - would the bees get tangled up in garden netting?
 

fredbloggs 

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I use wooden frame feeders . I cut a light wood float that fits (just) inside the internal space. There is no room for a bee to fit down the gap between float and wall - so they do not drown.

Those experiencing problems could look to this as well as maybe the fact frame feeders are not ideally suited to crowded colonys. Imagine the bees who walk down to fill up. As these bees attempt to exit they are met by wave after wave of bees trying to get in? Is that not the problem?

What is required is some stainless steel poles and purple rope to form a queueing system ("cashier number 2 please") ? :smilielol5:Or even an escalator?

Or maybe a jam jar?

Regards

FB
 

Queens59 

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I was on a course at Buckfast and they literally stuff the frame feeders with heather/twigs or anything similar.
 

Davelin 

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I have a couple of plastic frame feeders and having read the first few comments in this thread I ran some PVA glue down the sides and sprinkled with builders sand. Let it dry thoroughly and bees are now feeding absolutely fine, none drowned at all.
 

Gardenbees 

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I've never had any luck with floats in feeders; as someone else observed, the weight of eager bees can sink the float, and there's always a few sticky customers who get too gooey to climb out easily. I prefer a few long twigs wedged diagonally as ramps - several, not just the one. Even if they get really sticky, the bees gradually clean them off and don't seem to get badly stuck (although there's still the odd casualty). I only have the one frame feeder, and it's transparent, so watching them marching up and down the twigs is quite fun as well!
 

Tonybee 

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bees drowning with internal feeder

A rough surface does help- you can staple wet and dry paper to the sides with long reach stapler- do not use sandpaper as it disintegrates when wet.
I find the most useful hint is to use a strip of cork as a raft cut to just a bit thinner than the frame feeder- then bees can't get down the sides, but I leave the cork about a cm short of the length. This means there is a small area at each end with open syrup but it is only 0.5cm and bees will straddle this. And now the really useful bit- there are 4 pairs of 12 mm screws in the bottom of the raft-these act as both weight to ensure the raft doesn't tip up with many hungry bees on it and also act as legs to support the raft when the syrup runs out and lets the bees get right underneath round the end of the raft and clean it all up! The bees do nibble at the cork and and powder it a little. Drawing pins do the same job but I prefer the security of a screw thread. Could use balsa instead of cork but I have left-over cork from a flooring job.
For a rapid feeder I use the green plastic rectangular one with clear cones obtained from M and do get some black mould but an occasional scoop across the surface and round the edge sorts it and because of the design it doesnt disturb the bees (not keen on adding thymol). I do get just a few dead bees with this but only a dozen over winter liquid feed period. Happy bee keeping everyone.
 

thedaidai 

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I have tried thornys plastic frame feeder and had exactly the same result - drowned bees. Ply frame feeder works like a dream. Looks like a combination of shiny plastic and too narrow a float
 

justme 

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On a bee safari on Saturday, shiny frame feeder mentioned, as apiary owner had some, she said she glues glass paper to the inside. Works beautifully.
 

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