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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    PA
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    164

    Post

    Has anyone in the NE ever had any success with feeding granulated sugar during the winter using a division board feeder? I have a couple hives that could use a boost and here I am at the end of November.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Perkasie, PA
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    1,998

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    I never tried it, but would like to know myself.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Omaha, NE
    Posts
    264

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    What about candy or sugar boards as some people call them? We use them all the time over the winter in here NE.

    [size="1"][ November 22, 2005, 10:50 AM: Message edited by: Brian Suchan ][/size]
    AKA BEEMAN800

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    164

    Post

    I have heard of using the inner cover to feed granulated sugar but I am worried about encouraging robbing. Can you recommend a better way? Do you feel that there is an advantage to the boards over the division board feeder?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Evansville, IN, USA
    Posts
    2,837

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    BeeTeach . . .

    If you want to feed DRY granulated sugar, you could pour some onto newspaper placed on top bars.

    A Division Board feeder will require the bees to leave the cluster to feed. They may not do that in cold weather. A Candy Board puts the dried sugar-water over the cluster above top bars. That where the bees are usually, when they are looking for food in cold weather (assuming other in-hive source has been depleated).

    How would "using an inner cover" encourage robbing?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
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    1,895

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    I feed granulated sugar on paper placed on the top bar. During the fall / early winter I also feed syrup along with the granulated sugar.
    I leave the granulated sugar / paper on all winter protected by an empty box.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,203

    Post

    I've never seen dry sugar encourage robbing. I have a bucket of dry sugar I left on the porch since the begining of October, to see if the bees would take an interest. I've seen ONE bee in it ever. The bees take little interest in dry sugar unless they are starving. They don't seem to take it up and store it. They just eat it when they have nothing else. I prefer syrup in the division board feeder just because they will take it and store it. But syrup DOES seem to encourage robbing.

    I have heard of people (although I have not done it) dumping dry sugar down the back of the hive. When I've tried any dry sugar in the hive they seem as likely to haul it out for trash on a warm day as they are to ignore it and they never seem interested in it except at the end of the winter when they are hurting for stores.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Southern Oregon
    Posts
    1,162

    Post

    I have never seen dry sugar instigate robbing. In fact, I often use drivert sugar instead of syrup if the robbing vibe is in the air.
    JBJ
    John B Jacob www.oldsolbees.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
    Posts
    1,895

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    I have granulated sugar on paper on all of the hives and have for the last 3 weeks. Some hives don't use it much, while I have some hives on their second 5# bag. It is alot like syrup, some hives make use of it, while others don't touch it.
    It can't hurt to set the hive up and see what they do.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Perkasie, PA
    Posts
    1,998

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    I'm not sure if it will work, but this year I tried something new with candyboards. I had some very late combines so I decided to pour the hot candy into foundationless frames (used wired ones) and stick them right over the cluster. I suppose that you could call them candy-follower boards. Hopefully it will provide a little extra boost this winter.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    164

    Post

    This is one of my first postings. This whole thing is way too cool. I appreciate all of the feedback. I have been keeping a couple of hives for about 10 years but decided to begin to expand this past year. This is a great way to offer/receive information!!!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
    Posts
    9,123

    Post

    MountainCamp and any one else in the know........

    Is this a single sheet of newspaper??

    Do they chew through the paper to feed?

    How much area of the top bars do you cover??

    I have some single with questionable stores and would love to be able to "save" them if this would help.

    Thanks

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
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    1,895

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    Bruce,
    I use a single sheet of newspaper or noteook paper.
    They chew through the paper and climb on top from the sides.
    I cover the middle of the hive and leave space for air flow around the sides and ends of the paper.
    Last year I was able to "save" a few hives that would have without a doubt not made it.
    I would wrap the single with felt paper and set it so that it gets the most solar gain possible.
    I have been able to feed syrup well into December this way. They will feed on days that are sunny and mid 20's and warmer.
    I then make sure that they have enough granulated sugar through till mid to late Feb when I start with syrup again.
    There are some pictures on my website of the setup I use.
    I will take some pictures from this year and post them when I get the time.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
    Posts
    1,895

    Post

    Page #3 & #4 of the pitcures

    [size="1"][ November 22, 2005, 06:26 PM: Message edited by: MountainCamp ][/size]

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
    Posts
    9,123

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    South East Missouri
    Posts
    61

    Post

    This is one way to feed when its cold.
    If I find a hive that is to lite, what I use is a ziplock bag with about 6 lbs of sugar and about 1 and 1/2 cup of water, mix. Just use enough water to get the sugar to stick together. Lay this on top of the frames. I cut small slits in the botom, between the frames. Works for me

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Salem, Oregon
    Posts
    953

    Post

    There is an old beekeeping saying that is brought to mind:
    "Anything that you do is better that doing nothing at all"
    Unfortunatly, that rule isn't always true, but certainly is in relation to emergency feed.
    Granulated sugar is the salvation of light colonies in late winter because it will sustain them and yet not stimulate growth which would be the death of them.
    Once a flow begins, you can return to your syrup stimulation and praise the lord.
    (Secret confession: I feed all of my colonies granulated sugar in late winter. 1) it is premium feed and 2) it is an indication of colony health.)
    Never fed in granulated sugar in division boards, but willing to learn!
    I have exactly ONE hive more than you.
    That makes my opinion beyond question.

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