- Oct 16, 2012
- Reaction score
- Fareham, Hampshire UK
- Hive Type
- Number of Hives
Like most things in beekeeping there is more than one right way in beekeeping and much depends on personal preference - rarely does cost really come into it - most beekeepers are pretty frugal and will just seek to buy their preferred option at the best price they can find.We've been feeding fondant for a few weeks now here in Cromarty as they turned up their noses at our home made syrup [maybe it was due to the plastic milk bottles its kept in? -- we've now got ambrosia syrup from excellent local supplier near Inverness -- haven't syrupped them yet though as they're loving the fondant and a little of the fondabee we have left. Bea was bringing in loads of yellow pollen yesterday [9*C but sunny] -- the ivy seems +/- finished.
Is it a mishstake to use fondant then? Or is it a bit costly ££?
Jim + Lorna
The key thing whether you feed syrup, fondant, a mixture of both or leave them enough of their own honey is to ensure that they have the right amount of stores to see them through the winter and that they are fed at the right time.. it is as bad to over feed the bees as it is to under feed. They need space in the build up to winter for the queen to lay and then enough stores in the hive to survive.
My personal preference is to feed invertbee late in the season if they need a top up after the ivy flow. I have fondant and would use it if a colony was light in spring. I find they guzzle down invertbee very quickly and store and cap it - but you should do what suits you best.
Feeding to ensure they have stores to survive is important but I see a lot of beekeepers who seem to think that they should be fed 10 months out of the year and then wonder why colonies don't grow... simple answer is often that they don't leave enough space for the queen to lay when she needs space - I've even seen slabs of fondant placed on hives full of stores 'just in case' ... in case of what I would ask !!!