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Who has already started feeding their bees?

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Have you started feeding your hive(s)

  • Yes

    Votes: 18 56.3%
  • No

    Votes: 7 21.9%
  • No, but I plant to soon

    Votes: 4 12.5%
  • No, and I do not intend to

    Votes: 3 9.4%

  • Total voters
    32

jimbeekeeper 

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Just a quick poll on who has already started to feed in their hive(s).
 
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mrDoe 

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Depends what you mean by feed?

I've had candy on since the end of November, but it's still too cold to put syrup or patties on IMHO.
 

jimbeekeeper 

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By feeding I mean adding anything in addition to the stores you built up /left them with for over wintering
 

Finman 

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In April it will happen.
Bees are now sleeping and they have over half of their stored unused.
 

rich 

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Feeding two, as one was quite weak to start with, and just didn't collect a great deal of stores by the time the weather closed in.
The other (14x12) had a bit of a robbing spree on it in early Dec, weight for a one sided heft went from 45lb to 20lb in five days and lots of dead bodies about, I mean LOTS, even though the entrance was only two inches of the mouse guard.
I was really take off guard with the robbing, as this was really quite a strong hive, I had half expected the weak one to be in trouble, but did a quick look when doing the OX treatment on the 29th Dec and its fairing none to bad.
If both make it through the winter I think I?ll unite them, keeping the better queen of course.

Rich
 

Hivemaker. 

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I put yes,as some need feeding,but others will need no feeding at all,unless the weather in april is bad.
 

Poly Hive 

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I have put no as I am not feeding at the moment and also consider the weather to be still too cool to do so.

I am thinking (vaguely) that another two weeks or so.

PH
 

Bcrazy 

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I have feed fondant to my colonies a week after using OA.
Checked the other day and they are taking it down but not all that quickly.

Regards;
 

MJBee 

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Bee Crazy - great minds think alike (or is it fools seldom differ:))
Fondant given to all - will check tomorrow, weather permitting, to see how it is being taken down
Regards Mike
 

victor meldrew 

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Circa the nineties BV (before varroa), I left my bees well alone until March :).
Nowadays I treat with oa late Dec ,followed by fortnightly checks on fondant supply..
This winter I have had 1 colony starve ,even though I fed heavily and left fondant on them :(. I discovered their demise when applying oa..
I've toyed with the idea that varroa unsettles the bees, causing them to spread the cluster and consume stores quicker than they used to ??.

John
 

mrDoe 

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By feeding I mean adding anything in addition to the stores you built up /left them with for over wintering
In that case I just voted yes. All mine get fondant and are left to use it if they wish.
 

grizzly 

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My three have had fondant on since the week before xmas, will be checking today to see how quickly/slowly they have taken it.
 

mrDoe 

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To expand slightly, in case it is useful information to anyone, I put on 2lb of fondant onto each hive (late Nov/early Dec) and quickly check consumption every couple of weeks. Any that use 3/4 of their 2lb get another 4lb put on.

To date about 2/3 have not touched any, of those that have used some half have used a little and half have used lots; so 1/6 presumable might have starved already without it.

I've so far lost one weak nuc which I doubted would come through, but quite allot were no where near as strong as I would have liked going into winter. I knowingly took a gamble and decided not to unite some, hoping that those that do make it will be the better AMM's from which I want to move forward with in the future. I've also just bought more hives to expand with this coming year, so hopefully my losses will not be too heavy or the garage is going to be full of flat packs for a year or more.




Peter
Cambridge UK
 

Finman 

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I wonder how many of you feed sugarsyrup hives full and then let them be over winter. I just wonder your systems. So national.
 

mrDoe 

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I wonder how many of you feed sugarsyrup hives full and then let them be over winter. I just wonder your systems. So national.
Normally, I'd not feed any autumn syrup, but last summer was so bad around here I had to feed syrup (about 24 liters heavy syrup each) and only a matter of weeks later put on fondant, as some were still light.

In a good year I'd expect hives to be full from ivy and late orchard floor flowers, so much so that rather than feed late syrup I just put on fondant at the end of December.
 

grizzly 

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i had given them the 2.5kg blocks from thornes.

1 not touched at all, 1 has had about a 3rd taken, and another nearly all gone.

the hive that has taken the block almost completely is on langstroth Jumbo frames, am i to assume they are low on their own stores, or could it be a very large cluster ?

Do bees always take their own stores first before anything above the crownboard ? or could they just be taking the fondant as its easier ?
 

Poly Hive 

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Couple of thoughts here.

Why feed fondant over a cb? So you put it up in the attic away from the cluster which achieves what? Not a lot for the bees. In cluster in cold conditions it may as well be on the moon.

If feeding fondant it might be better to puff some smoke, put block on top bars, add an empty super and cover block with a blanket or insulation of some sort. Add cb and roof. Personally of course I would have a block of insulation over the cb as well.

I mean to heft my hives tomorrow and will report.

PH
 
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grizzly 

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Couple of thoughts here.

Why feed fondant over a cb? So you put it up in the attic away from the cluster which archives what?
They have not had any trouble taking the fondant as this is the second lot on each hive.
The fondant drops down thru the hole in the CB and they have been eating their way into the fondant bag.

The clusters are very large, going from top to bottom, you can see from the images their number, i see no point in creating a supers worth of extra space for them to heat up.
 
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jimbeekeeper 

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i see no point in creating a supers worth of extra space for them to heat up.
I dont think PH is sugesting leaving the "space" but filling in any voids with insualation, + insualation above the crown board.

It makes sence to me, fondant directly on bars gives maximum surface area to bees, surounded by insulation, then CB, and yet more insulation above.
 

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