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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    Littlerock, California, USA
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    951

    Default On sugar water...

    I am under the assumption that 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water makes 1:1 syrup, right?
    My two starter hives are each using about 20oz of this mixture per day. The frames seem to be really heavy and contain a lot of nectar/syrur that is not capped. Is this typical?
    “Everything will be all right in the end... if it's not all right then it's not yet the end”

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Covington, Ga, USA
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    1,549

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    no, its by weight. 1 lb of suger to 1 lb of water....
    "You laugh at me because I am different, but I laugh at you because you are all the same."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Ennis, TX USA
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    Default Re: On sugar water...

    You can do it either way. Equal cups or equal weight.
    Chuck Norris has a grizzly bear carpet in his room. The bear isn't dead it is just afraid to move.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    Littlerock, California, USA
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    951

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    I was trying to figure it out on the internet. According to Yahoo 2 cups of water is one pound.

    So a four pound sack of sugar should mix with eight cups of water to make 1:1 syrup.

    What do you think about 20oz/day consumption? Both hives doing the same. They are drawing comb on the two frames right next to the starter nuc.
    “Everything will be all right in the end... if it's not all right then it's not yet the end”

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Ennis, TX USA
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    5,124

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    So a four pound sack of sugar should mix with eight cups of water to make 1:1 syrup.
    Correct.

    20oz is not much. How are you feeding them (style of feeder) Are you only giving them 20oz a day? Are these new nucs? Not sure about your area of Cali, but if you are in the southern area where the drought is you should bee feeding as much as they will take and be feeding them pollen patties too.
    Chuck Norris has a grizzly bear carpet in his room. The bear isn't dead it is just afraid to move.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Littlerock, California, USA
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    951

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    I am using boardman feeders with a quart jar on each. I change them daily so I can track the usage.

    My hives are two five frame nucs each started end of last month.

    I am in the high desert of southern CA so I am giving them as much as they want. I am told that I should feed through Dec so they can then eat their stores.

    I was also wondering about pollen patties. I had better get some. Is there one type better than another? How long will it take to consume a 1lb patty? How long will I need to feed pollen patties?

    Thanks for the info.
    “Everything will be all right in the end... if it's not all right then it's not yet the end”

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Ennis, TX USA
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    5,124

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    Ditch the Boardman feeder. They can cause robbing. Get a hive top feeder. Below are links to a couple of the popular ones. The 4lb sack of sugar will make almost a gallon of 1:1 and in your area keep the feed on them.

    https://www.dadant.com/catalog/produ...roducts_id=761

    http://www.millerbeesupply.com/Page19and20.htm (syrup feeder)

    There are others. Use the search feature above there are many topics on feeders.
    Chuck Norris has a grizzly bear carpet in his room. The bear isn't dead it is just afraid to move.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Littlerock, California, USA
    Posts
    951

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    Derek,
    I am going to run with that advice. I ordered two top feeders with the two compartments for feeding syrup and pollen patties.
    “Everything will be all right in the end... if it's not all right then it's not yet the end”

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    Littlerock, California, USA
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    951

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    By the way... thanks
    “Everything will be all right in the end... if it's not all right then it's not yet the end”

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Ennis, TX USA
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    5,124

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    Quote Originally Posted by ccar2000 View Post
    Derek,
    I am going to run with that advice. I ordered two top feeders with the two compartments for feeding syrup and pollen patties.
    I have not used the one on the Miller site. Let us know how it works. I do like the dadan't one I linked though.
    Chuck Norris has a grizzly bear carpet in his room. The bear isn't dead it is just afraid to move.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Anderson County, Texas
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    1,254

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    When I feed I place a quart (canning) jar with about 8 small holes like this -:::- in the middle of the jar. I then place this jar over the innercover where the holes are aligned length wise along the inner cover holes. I prefer small mouth and leave room over the inner cover for the bees to come and go, otherwise some will be trapped in the upper box and die. I then put another medium box (empty) over the inner cover and then the top over this empty box. Then you can just lift the top to check the jars. If they are not on a flow then you will be feeding a quart everyday. I prepare an extra set of jars and have the sugar syrup in the extra jars already prepared before lifting the lid to replace the jar. If I move slowly and gently you seldom need gloves or veil. But if you lift the lid and they come after you quickly, just replace it and veil up (and gloveup).

    If they get on a flow they will eventually quit taking the sugar syrup, then just remove the jar and the empty box and replace the top. I usually pour (mix) 2- 4pounds bags of sugar in a 1/2 gallon of boiling water. Stir until all the sugar is disolved and cool. I was thinking that this would give you about 2-1 mixture as a gallon of water weighs about (I think) about 8 pounds, so 1/2 gallon would weigh about 4.

    I would only feed 1-1 during summer if they needed the moisture in the colony (otherwise I always feed this 2-1 mixture), because my idea would be to give them adequate stores as soon as possible.

    Also, I notice that people try to feed 1-1 for comb building and 2-1 for winter stores. Anyone know the reasoning behind this?

    Last comment: Also, if they seem to slow down or quit taking syrup they may still not be on a flow, but rather have run out of storage space because there are no unused cells. Give them a few days to start making was and then use will usuall pickup again. This is what you want if you are trying to encourage comb building. In order to make wax they must have be full of nectar/syrup for several days, and you must have bees of the proper age.
    Last edited by DRUR; 09-22-2009 at 09:55 AM. Reason: add last comment
    "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Nathan Hale, 1776

  12. #12

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    The reason for the 2:1 in the fall is because the moisture content of the 2:1 is closer to the moisture content of cured honey. This way the bees don't have to evaporate so much water from the syrup to cure it, which can be a challenge once it starts getting cold outside.
    BEE-L snob since 1999
    What's a swarm in April worth?

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Anderson County, Texas
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    Default Re: On sugar water...

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Y. View Post
    The reason for the 2:1 in the fall is because the moisture content of the 2:1 is closer to the moisture content of cured honey. This way the bees don't have to evaporate so much water from the syrup to cure it, which can be a challenge once it starts getting cold outside.
    I understand this. What I was wondering about is why some imply that it is better to feed 1-1 for comb building as opposed to 2-1?
    "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Nathan Hale, 1776

  14. #14

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    1:1 syrup simulates a fresh nectar flow. This will stimulate the bees to do a number of things - the building of comb being but one of them. It will also stimulate them to expand their brood nest, which is something you generally don't want them doing in the fall.
    BEE-L snob since 1999
    What's a swarm in April worth?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Anderson County, Texas
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    Default Re: On sugar water...

    Thanks Billy, but what I want to know is the logic behind this. Why would 1-1 stimulate comb building and expansion of brood nest more so than 2-1. Why does 2-1 not simulate a fresh nectar flow in the same way as 1-1. Just seems to me (logically) the only difference is the amount of evaporation necessary to prepare the syrup for storage. Also, it seems to me that the richer the syrup stored temporarily in the bees stomach (due to lack of storage capacity in the colony) would make for quicker wax production. The only 'logical' reason that I can see for feeding 1-1 as opposed to 2-1, is during the heat of the summer, when moisture is evaporated to cool (reduce) colony temperatures.

    I have always feed 2-1 in late winter/early spring to stimulate brood production (when the pollen is available) and when the colony has light stores, which often inhibits brood production (light winter stores that is). However, if the colony has adequate winter stores, it does not seem to me that feeding in the late winter/early spring stimulates anything as they do just fine from their winter stores when there is a good pollen flow. Fact is it seems to me that they prefer to use their winter stores first.
    Last edited by honeyman46408; 10-07-2009 at 06:47 AM.
    "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Nathan Hale, 1776

  16. #16

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    A nectar flow gives bees confidence to expand without regard to the amount of stores. It's like mother nature is smiling on them when there is a flow on. Nectar on the flower has a sugarater ratio similar to 1:1 syrup. So the bees see 1:1 as nectar. This is not the case with 2:1 syrup - I think the bees see this as something similar to robbed honey coming in and it doesn't give them the same confidence that the 1:1 does.

    A bees favorite food is fresh nectar, not stored honey. They will abandon the 1:1 or 2:1 syrup placed so convienently for them right in the hive and expend extra energy to get that fresh nectar on a flower, when it's available, and bring it back. Bees behave based on instinct, there is nothing "logical" about them.
    BEE-L snob since 1999
    What's a swarm in April worth?

  17. #17
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Anderson County, Texas
    Posts
    1,254

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Y. View Post
    A bees favorite food is fresh nectar, not stored honey. They will abandon the 1:1 or 2:1 syrup placed so convienently for them right in the hive and expend extra energy to get that fresh nectar on a flower, when it's available, and bring it back. Bees behave based on instinct, there is nothing "logical" about them.
    Thanks for your analysis. I personally think that bees can distiguish between the syrup and nectar. I have read somewhere that sugar syrup has a differenct ph than nectar. I do know this from experience that bees will ignore sugar syrup (regardless of 2-1 or 1-1 mixture) when they are on a good nectar flow. You can take them to syrup (or rather bring the syrup to them) but you can't force them to drink it.
    "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Nathan Hale, 1776

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Land O Lakes, Florida, USA
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    I just had my hives inspected and the inspector told me that if I back off the mix (was using 1:1) it will make the bees work harder to put it up and leave more room for the queen to lay. He suggested making it just sweet enough that the bees still take it.

    I guess with being in central Florida I still have plenty of time for them to expand like this for the fall flow.

    I got the frames 5 weeks ago (5 frames) and in both of them they have drawn out about 8 and 1/2 frames ( in a 10 frame deep) . So my plan is to add a honey super on top this weekend for them to have more room to put up honey from the "fall flow"

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Camas, WA
    Posts
    1,961

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    Drur,

    I tend to agree with you about the 1:1. I have always used 2:1 and in the spring they seem to start raising brood when they get it. I guess I understand the theory that maybe 1:1 is more like nectar but 2:1 seems to work just fine too.

  20. #20

    Default Re: On sugar water...

    Bees will ALWAYS raise brood in the spring. Regardless of what you feed them.
    BEE-L snob since 1999
    What's a swarm in April worth?

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