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CWBees
08-25-2006, 08:31 AM
How much 1:1 sugar syrup do you need to get a pound of honey?

How many pounds of honey are usually found in a deep brood super when bees overwinter?

My bees are falling short of what is going to be needed to make it through the winter which I assume would be at least two deeps with honey. However these are Russians so maybe they could do with less since they are supposed to be good at keeping just the the amount of bees they need around. I started the hives from nucs this spring. Right now it appears we are in a severe dearth of nectar. I am hoping for a strong fall flow. If don't get one I would like to figure out around how much sugar syrup is going to be needed to get these bees in shape for the winter.

[ August 25, 2006, 09:32 AM: Message edited by: CWBees ]

Dick Allen
08-25-2006, 11:45 AM
A deep frame of cured honey weighs somewhere in the vicinity of 7 pounds. A rough rule of thumb is that the weight of cured syrup "honey" will be slightly less than the weight of sugar used.

Most beekeepers feed sugar in the ratio of 2 parts sugar to 1 part water for overwintering. While 1:1 will work, it takes a bit more time (and uses a bit more sugar) for evaporating the water.

Here’s something you might find of interest: Scroll down 5 or so pages until you come to the article:

“The Inside Story of Feeding Sugar to Bees”

read paragraph (e) ‘Case study’

http://www.beehive.org.nz/newsletters/1997/bnl-1997-12.htm

[ August 25, 2006, 12:51 PM: Message edited by: Dick Allen ]

JohnBeeMan
08-25-2006, 03:40 PM
>>>How much 1:1 sugar syrup do you need to get a pound of honey?

If you figure that capped comb contains honey at about 15% moisture content then it should take slightly over 3/4 lb of sugar to get a lb of honey. It makes no difference if you mix the syurp 2:1 or 1:1 - the bees will evaporate out the extra water.

Chef Isaac
08-25-2006, 04:42 PM
Good artical!

CWBees
08-27-2006, 09:32 AM
Thanks, thats a great article. It looks like I will be feeding a large quantitys of suger to some of my hives if they don't get a good fall flow. My Carniolan hive was on the verge of starving. If the bees need at least 20 pounds of honey and a frame holds about 7 pounds they were in bad shape since I think they were lucky to have a frame or two of honey. For the past two days I have topped out their division feeder in the hive and it is empty the next day. I reduced the entrance to the hive to prevent robbing.

Jim Fischer
08-27-2006, 10:18 AM
One problem with feeding sugar syrup is the issue of
evaporation, which is limited by available free comb space in
which to place drops of this pseudo-nectar for evaporation.

In most cases of "fall feeding", the supers are off, so the bees
simply do not have enough real estate to process much of
the feed into actual "stores". One ends up with cells that
are "filled", but filled with something that is not quite "honey
consistency", or one ends up with a hive that seems unwilling
to "take" much of the feed offered. This is not reluctance on
the part of the bees, but a bottleneck caused by fuzzy thinking
on the part of the beekeeper.

If one tracks hive weight with a scale, one finds that feeding
can be a frustrating thing for another reason - unless the
queen is first caged, much of the feed can be consumed in
raising additional brood. The generic "Italian" strains are
famous for this, raising large amounts of brood in the
cool days of fall, burning up large amounts of feed trying
to keep the brood warm, and then being forced to cluster
on the coolest nights, resulting in chilled brood, a complete
waste of time and energy.

But heck, it is not even Labor Day yet, and many beekeepers
still do one (and only one) harvest during this time, or even
later, and THEN try to get their hives ready for winter.

To each his own, I guess.

Fusion_power
08-27-2006, 11:50 AM
The best bee feed is a generous supply of natural honey made by bees from the nectar of flowers. Sugar can be made into winter stores but it carries a price in wear and tear on the bees to ripen it and it will not be as good as honey for the bees use.

Brother Adam recommended feeding only the amount necessary to get through the winter then do any serious feeding the next spring. This won't work for the "leave it alone" beekeeper because you have to be there to start and continue the feeding at the proper time.

Fusion

CWBees
08-27-2006, 12:58 PM
We are such a nectar dearth here due to the weather I am going to have colonies starve to death if I do not feed them. These are first year colonies so they needed to draw the foundation as well as produce honey.

kenr
08-29-2006, 12:20 PM
We are having the same problems here in Yancey Co.Everybody is having to feed because there has been no flow since the spring flow and it was weak.My bees are first year also and one hive has not even filled out it's third hivebody.

sierrabees
08-29-2006, 11:31 PM
An extention of the question "how much sugar syrup makes a pound of honey?" is how much 1:1 syrup makes a frame of foundation. If I knew the answer to that I would have a better idea how to settle my yard rent with one landowner who wants frames of brood and honey (question of ethnic preferances) rather than extracted honey. I suspect that the bees spend more honey drawing out the comb than they can store in the same comb so it costs me much more to lose the frames than to pay with straight honey.

sierrabees
08-29-2006, 11:32 PM
Typo on the last post. I meant how much syrup or honey to make a frame of drawn comb.

wayacoyote
09-02-2006, 06:02 PM
ZERO!
I didn't check this thread thinking that this would have already been explained, but syrup sugar doesn't make "honey". It does make a honey-look-alike that can be used by the bees in a limited way for over wintering and building. But it shouldn't be called honey and can't be sold as honey.

Waya

beegee
09-02-2006, 09:09 PM
Way to go, waya! Bees only make honey from nectar. Sugar syrup makes thick sugar syrup. If you extract it with your honey, you'll have something, but it ain't honey.

Edward G
09-02-2006, 09:48 PM
..."I suspect that the bees spend more honey drawing out the comb than they can store in the same comb so it costs me much more to lose the frames than to pay with straight honey..."

I heard somewhere that it takes 6 pounds of honey to make one pound of wax.

sierrabees
09-02-2006, 10:52 PM
My best guess is that there is about 1/2 lb of wax in a full sized honey comb counting the cappings, so about three pounds of honey used up in the comb. If I figure another pound to raise the brood, pluss about two or three pounds left in the comb it comes up to about seven pounds per full depth comb. About the same as if the comb were full of honey. 5 lb of honey is about 1 3/4 quarts. One large frame is then about 1.55 quarts. If I owe seven quarts of honey yard rent then four large frames of brood and honey plus one medium frame should be pretty close. Or just for good will, five large frames should do it.

Thanks Edward. That gives me something to work with.

iddee
09-03-2006, 06:46 AM
>>I owe seven quarts of honey yard rent then four large frames of brood and honey plus one medium frame should be pretty close. Or just for good will, five large frames should do it.<<

I get 75.00 for a 5-frame nuc without the hive.
IE: 5 frames of brood and honey.
I get 10.00 for a quart of extracted honey.
I think you are in the ballpark.

naturebee
09-03-2006, 08:45 AM
--How many pounds of honey are usually found in a deep brood super when bees overwinter?
--(CWBees)

Usually for my area around 100 to 160 pounds.

--My bees are falling short of what is going to be needed to make it through the winter which I assume would be at least two deeps with honey.
--(CWBees)

Not for PA / NJ area.
You need to strive for a ‘very minimum’ of 7 to 8 full frames of stores for winter, but preferably a single deep full of stores on top with about 1/3 filled below is what I like to see. Remember that Russians are frugal with stores so I would give them a higher probability of successful wintering on 7 to 8 frames.

-- Right now it appears we are in a severe dearth of nectar. I am hoping for a strong fall flow.--(CWBees)

From what I am seeing when I go around assisting other beeks in my area, we better start ‘praying’ for a strong fall flow. My colonies are very strong at this point, and IF we get a decent fall flow, I’ll be ok. But for those that have started this season with packages and swarms, from what I am seeing in these start up colonies, the situation looks rather grim.

I may super up a few colonies that are outperforming and somehow finding surplus even in this dry time. But I am recommending to the beekeepers I help out that they forgo the fall harvest in all but the strongest colonies and let the bees prep for winter survival.

honigbiene
09-06-2006, 10:34 AM
Jim Fischer said, "If one tracks hive weight with a scale, one finds that feeding
can be a frustrating thing for another reason - unless the
queen is first caged, much of the feed can be consumed in
raising additional brood. The generic "Italian" strains are
famous for this, raising large amounts of brood in the
cool days of fall, burning up large amounts of feed trying
to keep the brood warm, and then being forced to cluster
on the coolest nights, resulting in chilled brood, a complete
waste of time and energy."

My question: Is caging the best way to get the queen to stop laying? I checked my two hives yesterday (midstate Michigan) and found brood, including eggs, but didn't find either queen. The two-super-deep brood chamber has little honey, lots of brood and several frames of pollen. However, winter is coming and they need to stop the brood-rearing and store honey. How do I get them to do this?

CWBees
09-06-2006, 11:42 AM
Thanks for all the great info. I hope feeding the bees is not "a complete
waste of time and energy." as Jim Fischer says. I do worry that feeding the bees will spur brood rearing which at this time is somewhat counterproductive. However I need to get the bees stores up.

If I feed them a fall syrup mixture of 2 parts sugar to 1 part water will this mixture be less likely to induce them to produce brood?