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mikethebee 

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Well I got my ingredients together for making me supplement vitamin Patties
Reason I be going to make um now is last year the bees had the worst year I can remember.
As you all know pollen was in short supply due to the bad weather and the bees was a long time changing over from there winter bees to the new spring young bees.
This winter I want the young queens to keep popin out a few eggs on regular intervals through the winter and keep up the population.
Years ago we learnt, Colony?s that are small with a low protein level going through the winter encouraged fast dieing bees, and would easily pick up other diseases.
Weak bees are dead bees in early winter. Don?t spend the time with them unite the best destroy the rest.
All the best mike

www.easybeeproducts.co.uk
 

Hivemaker. 

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So what is your recipe for these patties Mike,please let us know.This year has been worse than last and that was aweful. Do you buy pollen or collect your own.
 

Finman 

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This winter I want the young queens to keep popin out a few eggs on regular intervals through the winter and keep up the population.
]
That is not good idea. Let bees be in winter rest and they do better.
If you keep brooding all the winter, the hive will be finish when spring begans.



Winter cluster has temp 23C. When they rear brood, cluster temp is 32C.

Even if bees have good pollen stores in their hives, they do not raise brood over the winter.

Australians had a research. They tried to feed hives over winter so that hives are able to hit onto flower fields with full strengt after winter.
Hives became so sick that they must give up that idea: nosema, chalkbrood

.
 
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Polyanwood 

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I suppose that popping out a few eggs all Winter we also make it much more difficult to minimise levels of varroa? What do you think Mike??
 

Finman 

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One year spring come 3-4 weeks earlier and I started patty feeding.
Later it was found that bees do not stand mere patty feeding over one moth. They need pollen from nature.

I found that very early feeding does not help hive to grow much.

Same I found when we had 3 weeks mere rain and bees cannot go to willow flowers. Brood rearing collapsed but with those, who did not feed patty, their brood rearing stopped long time ago.


I have feeded bees 18 springs with pollen and patty.
 

jim 

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This is not a straight forward question, but two entirely different climatic conditions. Finman?s bees do not fly in the winter, where as Mike?s will, I think that very few hives are lost due to lack of stores, but more likely running out of bees, I am sure there are years when there is brood in hives 12 months of the year in the U.K. This is not ideal; I lose more bees in a ?gentle? winter than a ?hard? one. If I had a means of preventing my bees from flying and having a good rest like Finman?s that would be one solution, but that is not possible, so Mike?s way may be the way to go.

I did feed pollen supplement this autumn hoping that the bees may be stronger and not feel the need to fly through the winter.
 

Finman 

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Bees fly if they fly. You cannot stop them.

But I cannot see no reason to wake up them in Cristmas to lay if they have brood brake up.
 

jim 

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Finman
Some years you dont have to wake them up on Christmas day they arealready flying. That is the problem it is not cold enough to keep them in.
 

Bcrazy 

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Once I have settled the bees down for the winter I do not open the hive until I treat with OA. After that its leave well alone until the bees are flying in spring. I know there are some beekeepers who will feed them with fondant or candy and even honey of Christmas day, and this practise is out dated and totally unnecessary.
To help members just think about the bees and what they do if left alone by man. They do not break the cluster unless its disturbed, and if there are days when they can get out out phoo, they will. I strongly believe that 'mans' interference during the winter disrupts the colony who are trying to survive the winter, and it makes the process harder for the bees.

On saying that, I do understand that others have a different opinion on how to look after bees and that's what makes this hobby interesting. Its every one to his own way of dealing with bees and if they believe that it helps the bees then that is for the good of the bees.

Regards;
 

Finman 

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I know there are some beekeepers who will feed them with fondant or candy and even honey of Christmas day, and this practise is out dated and totally unnecessary. ;
Yes, in USA beemaster forum they are many. They have many kind of explanations why they must feed granulated sugar over the winter and they cannot fill combs with syrup in autumn. They have syrup jars along whole summer to feed hives.
 
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Polyanwood 

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Perhaps they think they are showing their bees more love giving them syrup all Summer? I wonder if they give their queens at least names?

I put a patty on at Christmas last year, as instructed. Will think twice about it now. It would be so easy as a new beekeeper if you just had to do as you are told.
 

Bcrazy 

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Don't always do as you are told because many beekeepers have obtained specific methods of their own and their own way of manipulations.

I have this argument every year with our committee because I want 'Mentors' to be of a certain standard before they teach beginners.

If you don't think something is right then question the mentor, find out just how much he knows, how long as he been keeping bees, has he any academic qualifications (BBKA Modules, NDB). Are there alternative methods of carrying out a specific manipulations, ask,ask and ask some more.

Regards;
 

Finman 

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If you don't think something is right then question the mentor, find out just how much he knows, ;
Very seldom folks care about advices. I something smells homboug, that is interesting. I can see how much some issue get views on forum.

We have alternatives:
1) bees need at Cristhmas patty
2) bee need not at all patty.
3) our climate is so different that nothing which have found somewhere, it does not suit here. In Australia or in Finland but not here.

I have read that you have in UK a big dead rate during winter.
Why we do not have and our climate is very harsh. - Our climate gives not choices what to do for wintering. It is allmost one formula.
 
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admin 

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Does anyone think that with a harsh uk winter we would have less colonies dying before spring?
 

jim 

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I am dreading a mild winter this year as the gorse came into flower two weeks ago and gorse usually flowers for about two and a half months. The worst winter loss I had was when the bees started to collect pollen from the gorse in Christmas week and continued collecting for about 10 days then there was a cold snap.
I put my losses down to the fact that they were stimulated by the fresh pollen, then the cold killed the brood and wasted the bees energy.
 

Finman 

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I put my losses down to the fact that they were stimulated by the fresh pollen, then the cold killed the brood and wasted the bees energy.
If bees start to raise brood and it becomes one week frost week and ground is covered with snow, bees get no water and all larvae will die. It means 2 weeks larvae : snow weeks and last week's. Capped brood stay in combs.

I may have -6C by night and brooding continues. They pick water ouside even in +2C weather.

My bees stop brood rearing in late summer but when I feed them for winter, they start again rearing.
 
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admin 

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I love your reply Finman "I smells humbug" :laughing-smiley-004
 

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