I know people feed's dry sugar in Emer-case's.But the problem is the bees has to have mosture to convert it over to honey.
My ? is for time saving & feeding alot of hives, could you not dry feed it now while the bees can still fly & get water?
I was unloading a large load of sugar the other night & left some sacks of it outside on the ground,the next day the bees had found a hole in one of the sack's they was working it.I've left it there & now they are 1000's of them on it all day long.So what would the problem be to feed them that way?>>>>MARK
Mark, I'm in Mobile. I've never tried that, so I can't speak from experience. If I were forced to guess, I would think that it would probably work, but not as efficiently as syrup. If it worked well I have to believe beekeepers would be doing it routinely.
I try to avoid feeding for a couple of reasons, the primary one being time/labor. Dee also points out that honey is probably the best food for the bees. I leave feed on in the form of stored honey rather than feeding, and if a colony doesn't have enough stores for Winter then something is wrong. I either requeen and feed, or more often, join with a strong colony for the Winter, and split in the Spring.
Right now it sounds like it would work. My problem is sometimes the bees decide somthing is trash and start hauling it out of the hive and dumping it on the ground. I'd start on a small scale and see how it works first.
Dry feeding is a good technique to save a light hive in late winter,when you really dont want to add to the moisture in the hive.One Colorado beeman used to go around to his hives in early spring,tilt the hive back while his wife dumped a 5 lb, bag of sugar in through the entrance of each of 500 hives..I have fed lots of Drivert sugar to hives in Jan and Feb by just pouring a panfull around the edges of the cluster.They will sometimes waste granulated sugar by hauling it out but they will really eat up Drivert.I still prefer to feed liquid syrup.Drivert can also be fed to nucs if you dont want to set up feeders.
The problem I see is if they need a lot of feed in the combs for winter,it would take a lot of time and effort for the bees to put it there starting with dry sugar.I think of it as more of an emergency type feed.
[This message has been edited by loggermike (edited August 27, 2003).]
Bakers Drivert sugar.It is mostly powdered sucrose (no cornstarch)with (I think)8% invert sugar.Dadant carries it in Ca.where it is a popular feed.I dont know if other branches carry it.The bees love it,but it is more expensive than granulated sugar.I like to have some for emergency feeding ,but regular syrup is still the most economical.
loggermike: I get my sugar from a cookie factory, It's in a powdered form. they said when they get it is granulated & they have their on machine to grind it into powder,
So would that be the same as drivert sugar?>>>>MARK
No but it might work just as well.Being powdered probably makes it easier for the bees to work with than granulated.Drivert has some inverted sugar in it.It is used to make fondant or frosting by bakers.Whether the invert makes any real difference to the bees is open for speculation.I dont know.
We used to feed scrap powdered sugar from the gum factory.It was mint flavored and had small pieces of chewing gum mixed in.The bees would rob this stuff like it was honey.
[This message has been edited by loggermike (edited August 28, 2003).]
I have found that feeding dry sugar at this time of year doesn't work well at all. If there is nectar available the bees opt for it almost always and will often toss the granulated sugar out. But it has been years since I've feed sugar so my memory may be a bit fuzzy. Feed it in winter when needed or as syrup for best results and less waste.