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  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by beemandan View Post
    What piece of information convinced you, over 10 years ago, that you needed these additives?
    Well Beemandan, I'm, as we speak looking at a sample profiles of my bee pollen dated 4-95.

    What I've been doing for the past ten plus years is.... Trying to match what natural bee pollen is, ie, in the lab profiles.

    Take "ash" , bee pollen avg at 2.46 so does that mean we should have sub made at that level ? I don't have the answer to that, but I wish I did.

    What I do is I have different pollen sub's go on my bees and I look to see if there are any major changes over winter and spring. Now does this prove that I'm on the right track, no of coure not, but I have done some things that have shown MAJOR changes in the hive.

    SO, to make short story long, I think this topic has legs.
    Last edited by JohnK and Sheri; 03-14-2009 at 01:41 PM.

  2. #42
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    Aug 2002
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    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    >Ok Michael Bush...do you see my point now?

    I do.

    > We've got beekeepers contemplating various sorts of 'home remedies' to lower the pH of their supplemental feeds. We have no idea how lemon juice or citric acid (or any other pH lowering additive), used in a beekeeper's concoction will impact their bees...short or long term.

    I agree.

    >And worse yet we haven't even determined if those feeds need their pH lowered...at least not in my opinion.

    I agree. My point really is that by using syrup and artificial feeds and organic acids we create a roller coaster of pH and mess up the entire microflora and microfauna of the hive. I don't think just lowering the pH of syrup will make it as nutritious as honey... but I think ONE of the problems with syrup is the pH.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #43
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    Jan 2009
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    Swalwell, AB
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    Words are words. Reality is reality. Guys like Keith go by results. So do I.

    Empirical tests have proiven time and again that bees fed 'artificial' diets do better than bees that are left to their own devices when the pickings are slim. As for disease, bees that are well fed show a whole lot less disease and pest damage than bees which are not supplemented in my experience.

    Can these diets be improved? Of course, but even after extensive research, only slight improvements have been found. To me that says they are pretty good as they are.

  4. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by allend View Post
    Empirical tests have proiven time and again that bees fed 'artificial' diets do better than bees that are left to their own devices when the pickings are slim.
    when the pickings are slim
    It’d be hard to argue that starvation is better for bees than feeding syrup and subs.
    Last edited by beemandan; 03-13-2009 at 06:55 AM.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  5. #45
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    Jan 2009
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    Swalwell, AB
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    It’d be hard to argue that starvation is better for bees than feeding syrup and subs.
    You got it. The thing is that it is hard to know in advance when that will be. After the disaster, predictions are easier, but then it is too late, and recovery from a failure takes a long time and costs a lot, too.

    With monoculture, engineered crops, weed sprays removing a lot of bee forage in crops and fence lines and ditches, there is a lot less out there for bees. Add to that the seasonal dearths that occur most places and the bees can be stressed.

    Feeding is insurance. If the bees don't need it, they won't take it, but they almost always do. That tells me something.

    In an ideal world we would not have to feed, but for those of us dependant on our bees surviving and thriving, who wants to take a chance?

  6. #46
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    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    So, ignorant on this subject as I am I have a question which may have been answered somewhere else. If so, sorry for being out of the loop or for having my head in the sand, however it looks.

    Has pH been looked at as a possible cause of CCD? Or a contributing factor?
    Mark Berninghausen To combat Ebola, please consider supporting http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org


  7. #47

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    As Allen pointed out, in a perfect world those supplements wouldn't be necessary. I think its equally apparent that diverse natural sources of pollen and nectar are the best thing for bees. But...it aint a perfect world.
    All of my thoughts expressed on this thread are in regards to whether or not beekeepers need to adjust the pH of their supplements.
    Last edited by JohnK and Sheri; 03-14-2009 at 02:10 PM.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  8. #48
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    Has pH been looked at as a possible cause of CCD? Or a contributing factor?
    I'm not sure how it could be. pH is simply a measure of the acidity of chemicals, and, yes, everything you can touch and feel is a chemical. pH measures the acidity, but there are other factors, too, like reactivity.

    Everything in the hive and outside has a unique pH, and the pH can be changed by combining items, adding enzymes, fermentation, oxidation, etc. etc. etc.

    If the question is whether the pH of some specific thing like nectar or pollen or feeds or drugs or the boxes the hive is made of causes CCD, the question is so general and impossible as to be meaningless.

    Bees have dealt with items of varying pH since antiquity.

    If we are talking about feeds, then we have to assume that the bees know best. If they consume a feed when they do not have to, they must find it manageable.

    If adjusting the pH results in more or less consumption, then maybe that means something. Maybe it does not, though, since kids eat candy and we think that candy is not the best choice of foods.

  9. #49
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    So were my reactions to the earliest posts way out of line as reactions to them seem to imply? I thought that the Thread was about controling "Hive pH" and that is why my replies were what they were. But apparently this Thread is a discussion of the pH of bee feed, right?

    So, what is the optimum, the best, pH of syrup and or pollen substitute? Is the answer the same for each? How is the answer determined?

    Thanks for your patience.
    Mark Berninghausen To combat Ebola, please consider supporting http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org


  10. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by allend View Post
    If we are talking about feeds, then we have to assume that the bees know best. If they consume a feed when they do not have to, they must find it manageable.
    I'm not sure how generally you mean this statement....but I'd suggest that when bees consume pesticides, for example, they appear to fail this test.
    I usually cringe when folks make the statement that the bees know best. Maybe when they existed in the wild without exposure to humans....but surely not in our atificially created nests and agricultural environment.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  11. #51
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    If you are going to quote me, please also quote the qualification I made.

    No matter. We are in agreement. As for pesticides, they are deliberately contrived to be insideous and we cannot expect bees to detect them, although sometimes they can. I would consider them to be exceptions, as I would some salts and trace minerals, which is why I do not advocate lacing feeds with such chemicals.

    Proteins, vitamins, lipids and other normal constituents of foods are different IMO. Do the bees know if they are getting too much or too little? I don't know.

  12. #52
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    Worcester County, Massachusetts
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    Quote Originally Posted by beemandan View Post
    when the pickings are slim
    Itd be hard to argue that starvation is better for bees than feeding syrup and subs.
    exactly correct!

    in a pinch, a few $1 burgers from mcdonalds are fine if you are on the road, because they are cheap and redily available. this is, however, a lously primary diet for inner city children (and adults)...we all know this.

    so, feeding a starving colony a subpar diet is better than having them starve...but why use the subpar diet?

    do we feed bees sugar/hfcs/brewers yeast/eggwhites/potato flakes/etc because we think it is better? more nutritious for the bees? no, we use these feeds because they are cheaper and easier to obtain than trapped pollen and honey.

    if we thought that sugar syrup was equivilent to honey, we would be spreading that stuff on toast for breakfast. no one that can afford honey will do such a thing (well, i'm sure some will...some people are turned off by "bee barf").

    deknow

  13. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    no, we use these feeds because they are cheaper and easier to obtain than trapped pollen and honey.
    Well, not entirely true in my opinion. First, if I had extra pollen and honey they'd be in my hives to begin with. If my bees needed feeding I'd probably avoid buying pollen and honey, in part, because of the liklihood of introducing some pestilence. Considering what I've seen in some commercial beeyards...
    Don't everyone get in a snit....I said some...not all.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  14. #54
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    I heard a long time beekeeper say that adding a bit of apple cider vinegar to your sugar syrup will help decrease nosema.
    I also heard of adding crushed vitamin C tablets to pollen substitutes, supposedly the bees like it better like that and use it up more readily.

  15. #55
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    NE Calif.
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    Samak, Check out this study that showed acidifying syrup had no effect on nosema:http://www.apimondia.org/apiacta/slo...n/forsgren.pdf

  16. #56
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    Amador County, Calif
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    Quote Originally Posted by beemandan View Post
    Ok Michael Bush...do you see my point now? We've got beekeepers contemplating various sorts of 'home remedies' to lower the pH of their supplemental feeds. We have no idea how lemon juice or citric acid (or any other pH lowering additive), used in a beekeeper's concoction will impact their bees...short or long term..
    Yes, we do know the impact.

    Dan, your implied statement speaks for itself.

  17. #57
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    Oct 2007
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    VENTURA, California, USA
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    Default Check out this study that showed acidifying syrup had no effect on nosema

    Loggermike:
    Thank you for the very good information!
    So, now we can use Vitamin C as a syrup preservative which I am sure is a lot better for the bees than bleach that some people use.
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  18. #58
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    Jan 2009
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    Swalwell, AB
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    One thing that concerns me about adding various items to the mix is that, unless they are known to improve the health or nutrition of the bees, there may be unintended consequences.

    Acids may interact with the other components and degrade or alter them.

    I suppose the proof of the pudding is in the eating, and the development of the colony and long-term survival tells more than anything, but I have seen beekeepers add things to bee feed that they a.) do not know for sure are beneficial and b.) do not know at what levels the additives become toxic to the bees.

  19. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by allend View Post
    I suppose the proof of the pudding is in the eating, and the development of the colony and long-term survival tells more than anything.

    Well said, Allen

  20. #60
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    Oct 2007
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    VENTURA, California, USA
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    Default I suppose the proof of the pudding is in the eating,

    Bees need Vit. C for brood rearing.
    Fact or fiction.
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

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