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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Evansville, IN, USA
    Posts
    2,838

    Post

    NewBEES, FYI, here's my notes:

    1) Stimulative feeding should begin Feb 1st when strong colonies are needed in early spring. (Source Unknown)

    2) Feb 1st; Begin feeding thin syrup and pollen substitute. (Geo's PINK PAGES, Jun 99)

    3) Pollen deficiencies can be met by feeding pollen supplement beginning 5 to 6 wks in advance of first natural pollen collection. (H&HB,1963,p356, H&HB,1992,p838) Once initiated, must be continually provided until natual pollen is available. (H&HB,1992,p838)

    4) Queen wear out faster in colonies fed pollen or substitute. (H&HB,1963,p367)

    5) Heavy fall feeding of syrup produces stores that contain little, if any, pollen. (Source Unknown)

    6) Dont overfeed in spring. A honey-bound brood nest leads to early swarming. (Source Unknown)

    7) Provide water source for early brood rearing. Gathering of water is more noticeable in early spring during brood rearin and in hot weather. Warm water is preferred in April. (ABC&XYZ,1974,p650)

    Just "Food for thought"

    ------------------
    Dave W . . .

    A NewBEE with 1 hive.
    First package installed
    April, 2003.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    crown point, NY, USA
    Posts
    971

    Post

    ) Stimulative feeding should begin Feb 1st when strong colonies are needed in early spring. (Source Unknown)

    2) Feb 1st; Begin feeding thin syrup and pollen substitute. (Geo's PINK PAGES, Jun 99)

    reply:

    This is good if you live in a more southernly direction. But for northern beekeepers I would look at what Allen Dick has to say about this at his Albert Beekeeping site.

    3) Pollen deficiencies can be met by feeding pollen supplement beginning 5 to 6 wks in advance of first natural pollen collection. (H&HB,1963,p356, H&HB,1992,p838) Once initiated, must be continually provided until natual pollen is available. (H&HB,1992,p838)

    4) Queen wear out faster in colonies fed pollen or substitute. (H&HB,1963,p367)

    reply:

    I cannot point the sources off the top of my head at the moment but there have been many studies that show the phsycial defects to bees raise on pollen sub. A % of real pollen would probably go along ways toward over all better bee health for beekeepers that wish to use a substitute. Real pollen would probably best to feed as there really is nothing that comes close to the real deal.

    6) Dont overfeed in spring. A honey-bound brood nest leads to early swarming. (Source Unknown)

    reply:

    This goes along with not feeding too early on my first point above. Starting to feed too early in the north will just dump food down the bees and will make the broodnest clogged up. Stimulative feeding should be well timed. However in the case of stores shortage you have to do what you have to do. I only wish to point out that beekeeping is local, and that dates do not apply to all.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    portland
    Posts
    85

    Post

    Excellent post, but I agree that the timing of feeding to jump start rearing is critical, especially in the PNW.

    We start to warm up around this time but typically we get a few weeks of cold rain in march that can prevent the bees from flying and cause the hive to starve out.

    So perhaps if your hive is low on food stores to begin with, one should wait a few more weeks to be sure that the hive doesn't HAVE TO forage everyday to feed all those young bees.

    Great summary though. Kudos.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    McMinnville, TN, USA
    Posts
    716

    Post

    Maple is our first pollen source. It begins blooming between Feb. 15 and March 1. If I was to start feeding 5 weeks before this I would be feeding the first week of Jan. I think I am going to give them stimulative feeding when I see the maoles blooming. We have frost until April in a normal year and as late as the 15th of April. Poplar bloom around first week in May and this is our main flow. From all the reading I have done this would have me start feeding 1st of March. This I think is more important than using a date before first pollen. You do not want your hive to peak to soon. I plan on making some splits early so the extra bees will be used. But if I did not have splits planned I think I would wait till atleast the end of Feb. or first part of March so that they would not peak to early. I am going to try and trap some pollen this year for next years spring feeding. This year I have ordered premixed pollen substitute. It was cheaper for me since I only have the 2 hives.

    What are your thoughts on my reasoning for not starting stimulative feeding 5 weeks before first pollen?

    JC McMinnville TN

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Raleigh, NC, USA
    Posts
    761

    Cool

    HillBilly,
    It takes 40 days for a bee to develope from an egg into a forager. Since your main honey flow starts around May 1, stimulating brood rearing around March 1 would be about right for the new foragers to be available at the beginning of the flow. Continue stimulating for 6 weeks to keep the forager population very high during the 6 week flow. At the end of the flow you need to split off the extra bees (and feed the splits) so they don't eat up your tulip poplar honey.

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