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  1. #21
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    5,041

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    [QUOTE=Ian;270033]
    I feed once, 2.5 gallons/hive, feed round twice, 5 gallon/hive. Gets them up to 180or so lbs/hive for winter. /QUOTE]

    How many more pounds/gallons of honey do your hives produce than sugar fed? How do the economics work out? Value of honey produced versus sugar fed?

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

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    od frank ask:
    How many more pounds/gallons of honey do your hives produce than sugar fed? How do the economics work out? Value of honey produced versus sugar fed?

    tecumseh suggest:
    there would be a bit more to it than that od frank, although certainly gained/lost honey production or increased pollination fees might be a small part. to do this throughly you would construct a partial budget (I think that is the proper term) where you would place what is gained and what is lost on two sides of a ledger and see what the tabulation tell ya'.

    with 3 pound packages costing $100 this alone would suggest that you can feed a lot of $.40 sugar (about 250 pounds if my not so new math still works) just to keep from replacing the hive.

    but don't get my drift wrong od frank I am not suggesting everyone go out there and dump 250 pounds of sugar in each and every hive they have.... certainly the idea should be to get a hive up to some self sustaining size and see what they can do.

    as a more direct response to your question about added honey I can tell you this... the last four years prior to this year Texas had an ongoing drough and not so much unlike what the folks on the east coast are now experiencing. during this time I made a small crop while others made nothing. I attribute a lot of this to the fact that I am very proactive about feeding my bees in the winter and not just sittin' there watchin' em' die.

    I would find it interesting to find out how much Ian thinks the stimulative feeding encourages honey production????

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,612

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    I cant answer that, because so many other factors influence my hive production. But you have to realize I am working on a high hive honey potential. I will average 175-200lbs per season. This year the flow stopped early, and left me with 155lbs/hive. I didnt get my fall flow.

    Stimulative feeding does keep that queen going, But I also think a hive will work and respond better with an abundance of feed at hand. With the mid spring feeding I do keep that queen going, but I also bulk the hive up with resources, so the hive has to pack the brood chambers with less honey, getting to the supers quicker. And up here, the quicker you have the bees in shape, the heavier the honey crop you will get. The clover and canola are my bread and butter, they come early, and sometimes short. I work my hives so they are ready to go mid June, and by middle of July, I am in the midst of taking off 100lbs plus of white honey. Sunflowers, 2nd cut alfalfa, and buckwheat all come in August, not hard to utilize having the hives just comming off the canola fields.

    So I project feeding 20-25$ of feed to my hives every year(spring and fall feeding), helps me produce a 200 lbs honey crop. My dollar is worth the same as yours now, so thats 200$ gross on a 1$/lbs market( if it get there again ). I'll through another 30-40$ operating costs at the hives, and I have losts to work around.

    Feeds cheap, keep those hives full and they will jump at oncomming flows.
    Last edited by Ian; 10-24-2007 at 09:12 PM.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

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    nice explanation Ian..

    I would have assumed your flow is significant and of short duration which means either the bees are in condition to catch you a crop or they don't. the latter works out to mean lost opportunity and lost income...

    some years back I ran a few cattle in the state next door and I had a cow person (why are all the very best cattle men women?) tell me... 'it hard to starve a profit into them cows.' of course cows and cattle are quite different but I do think the thinking holds to some degree.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,612

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    **** straight!
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

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