How Long Should I Keep Feeding Pollen Sub?
I put a Mann Lake patty on my hive about mid February. The bees ignored it, then nibbled it a little and then in the last two weeks chowed down. My cluster went from grapefruit size in mid-Feb. to about 6 mediums frames of solid brood, nearly all capped. Based on past inspections, I figure that a bunch of brood is due to hatch out in the next few days and the brood nest should expand into the next medium box at that point (I hope anyway).
There is lots of natural pollen available, but they are going to need plenty of protein in the next 3 weeks. There is one side of a medium frame that is full of stored pollen/bee bread.
Should I give them another patty or let them use the real stuff only at this point? I want them to keeping growing, but I don't want them to swarm (no signs of swarming so far). Also, I suspect that the real thing is better for them than sub.
What do you (if not employed by Mann Lake ) think?
As long as you can see that they're hauling in their own pollen, you should be fine not adding any substitute.
It's my opinion that you're always better off letting them get that which is naturally available if possible.
See there, I don't work for Mann Lake at all!
Bees Keeper @ www.BeesCause.blogspot.com
I ask the same question and one of the senior beekeepers put the answer to me like this. He said put it out. If they find something they like better they will get it. If they don't they will get the patty. He said when a bee goes shopping they do not get everything, they pick and choose. A patty is just another choice of something to pick from.
Stone Mountain, Ga.