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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    Tip of the Thumb, Michigan
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    676

    Default Pollen Patty Consistency?

    For those of you who make and use pollen patties, what is the proper consistency?

    I'm trying several different recipes, and my patties are turning out to be rather "cookie dough-ish". I'm worried about it turning runny from the heat of the hive, and coating unsuspecting bees. While I could add soy flour to thicken it, I'm wondering just HOW thick to make it. Thoughts?

    Thanks in advance,
    DS

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Lakeland FL
    Posts
    862

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    when i make pollen it comes out like dough a little might ooze down the frames but not much.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
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    3,288

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    Quote Originally Posted by BigDaddyDS View Post
    I'm worried about it turning runny from the heat of the hive, and coating unsuspecting bees.
    DS
    Try some wax or newspaper down first with a patty on top.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Snowmass, Colorado, USA
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    2,496

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    You want the consistency to be cookie doughish. There needs to be a certain amount of moisture in it so the bees take it well. Like Keith said you can just put down a piece of wax paper if its too runny, but I have found that some getting through the frames doesn't bother or hurt the bees.

    Here is what my patties consistency looks like.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/26959541@N06/3416242026/
    Life is tough, but it's tougher when you're stupid.” John Wayne

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Lakeland FL
    Posts
    862

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    is that your pollen patty alpha? that is a very differant coloration than i have ever seen what do you use?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Snowmass, Colorado, USA
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    2,496

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    Here is how it is made up.

    Patties – 5 gallon bucket mixture
    2 Cups of Yeast
    7 lbs of Sugar
    8 drops of thyme
    15 drops lemongrass
    15 drops spearmint

    Measure out the brewer’s yeast into a large container. Add your essential oils as measured above. I recommend using an eye dropper for precise measurements. Pour liquid brewer’s yeast into 5 gallon bucket. Add sugar slowly with mixing with an electric drill equipped with a “mud” paddle. Mix until the consistency is that of a thick mushy mashed potatoes. Add sugar or small amount of yeast to get consistency right. In feeding lots of hives I find you can then pour/spoon this mixture out of the 5 gallon mixing bucket into one used for feeding and then continue to mix a new batch in your mixing bucket. If you try and mix too much, you will burn out your drill which is why I recommend mixing in the above measurements.

    Patties – Cement Mixer

    2 Quarts of yeast
    30 lbs of sugar
    32 drops of thyme
    60 drops of lemongrass
    60 drops of spearmint
    In a large mixing bowl measure out 2 quarts of liquid brewer’s yeast and then add your essential oils. In a clean cement mixer pour the yeast/EO mixture. Turn on the mixture and begin to add the sugar. Continue to mix until well mixed and with a consistency of thick mushy mashed potatoes.
    Life is tough, but it's tougher when you're stupid.” John Wayne

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Valley Center, CA
    Posts
    190

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    We vary the recipe slightly based on expected temps. We go for the very thick cookie dough consistency. 5, 5 1/2, or 6 buckets of syrup.

    The secret recipe:
    90 Lbs Soy flour
    90 Lbs Dried brewers yeast
    50 Lbs Granulated sugar
    40 Lbs Pollen granules
    25-30 Gallons Sugar syrup (Prosweet 77)
    KI6FCI

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
    Posts
    3,288

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    Terry, thats over a 600lb batch, well done.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    independence,ky,usa
    Posts
    53

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    Alpha6, do you not add any pollen to your patties? I have a real neat tool for mixing thick dough like bread dough. It is called a dough whisk from King Arthur flour co.

    Joan

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    El Dorado County, CA
    Posts
    605

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    i strive for a consistency of peanut butter.
    all that is gold does not glitter

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    VENTURA, California, USA
    Posts
    3,604

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    Terry,
    What is your source for Prosweet 77?
    I see that you did not add any Cannola oil.
    Can someone help me out with the oil part of the formula?
    Thanks,
    Ernie
    Last edited by BEES4U; 06-27-2009 at 06:23 PM. Reason: Added a sentence.
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Valley Center, CA
    Posts
    190

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    We order the Prosweet-77 directly from Mann Lake. We have a 5000 gallon tank behind the honey house, so we can receive a full truckload.

    We don't add any oil to our patty mix. It's mixed in a big 'paddle-wheel' type cement mixer. We dump it into special pallets rimed with 2x4's, lined with plastic sheeting. The only oil used is to spray the plastic so the mix doesn't stick.

    Here's a pic: http://donnerpartykitchenstaff.com/p...y081213-151456
    KI6FCI

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Fresno California USA
    Posts
    2,479

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    Terry:
    Where do you obtain the pollen? Irradiated?

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Valley Center, CA
    Posts
    190

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    We bought it from Chaparral Honey. They bought a trailer load of pollen from China & we bought a portion of it from them. It was irradiated.

    I don't know who their source was.
    Last edited by Terry Small, Jr; 06-28-2009 at 01:00 PM. Reason: Add info
    KI6FCI

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
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    3,288

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom G. Laury View Post
    Terry:
    Where do you obtain the pollen? Irradiated?
    Yeah know Tom, I used to use Chinese Irradiated pollen in my sub, but after all that we have witness the last year or so with the Chinese food health problems I don't trust them in the least. So needless to say, I quit useing bee pollen in sub.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Fresno California USA
    Posts
    2,479

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    Keith
    I hear you. One year with the Chinese pollen I could have sworn they started dying as soon as I put them in. Ended up chucking 2000 lbs patties.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Delta, Utah
    Posts
    494

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    When making patties, I always making it a little runnier than cookie dough. By the next day it always thickens up to the right consistency. If I make it the perfect consistency today it is too hard by tomorrow.
    -Rob Bliss
    Bliss Honey and bee supplies

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Valley Center, CA
    Posts
    190

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    True, it's always runny the day you make it. We mix it kinda thin so it can thicken up the second day. You have to allow time for the excess moisture to be soaked up.
    KI6FCI

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Tip of the Thumb, Michigan
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    676

    Default Re: Pollen Patty Consistency?

    Just a quick follow up to my original post:

    I was able to add more sugar and a bit more brewers yeast to bring the consistency up to a moist cookie-doughish level, which set up a little and formed a slight crust while I posted and waited for response.

    After placing the patties on the test hives for 24 hours, no runnyness was found, and the bees are working the patties well. Weather here has been cooler and rainy, and no field force has been out during the test period. The bees appear to be both consuming the patties and storing some within comb. None of the hives are discarding the patties as hive trash. The patty recipe seems to be working. For the most part...


    One interesting thing that I'm finding is that the hives with older, foraging age bees are working the patties rather well, with several dozen bees chewing away at the sides of the patty.

    But, on the hives primarily composed of young bees, a few bees appear to be taking the patties. The rest of the hive appear to be ignoring it.


    I'm not entirely sure what to make of this finding, but it appears to be across the board and is rather curious. Especially since my intention was to provide a confined swarm box (starter nuc) both liquid feed (through a division board feeder) along with a pollen patty, to help them raise my queen cells. But, if young bees, which I've shaken into a confined screened nuc, aren't taking the pollen... then what? Thoughts?

    I'll have to think some more, myself, on this one...
    DS

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