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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Atlanta GA
    Posts
    276

    Default Can I feed new package sugar water/honey

    Hi: I have a hive I started last year that made it through the winter fine with two supers of honey. There is still a super and a half full of honey left from last year! Since it was a new hive last year I fed them quite a bit of sugar water so I imagine this honey is made from the sugar water I provided them. I will be getting a new package of bees in a few weeks (I won a package at bee school!). Rather than feed this new package sugar water can I just take that super of sugar honey from my existing hive and give it to this new package? I can't harvest this sugar water honey and the bees can eat it and that way they will have a super of drawn out comb after they consume the honey. What do you think of this idea? Thank you in advance.
    Sally

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,833

    Default Re: Can I feed new package sugar water/honey

    Are your honey supers and brood boxes the same depth? If they are it would work out great to give them some frames of honey to start out with, no need to use the whole super at once. If your brood boxes are different from honey supers you could still do it, but you may at some point end up with brood in your honey super which would make it harder to remove in the near future. John

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Pope, AR, USA
    Posts
    126

    Default Re: Can I feed new package sugar water/honey

    It would work for sure. Be careful it doesn't get damaged in transfer or it will leak all over, gum up and drown the new bees and get the other hive to rob them out. NOTHING starts violent robbing frenzies like honey does! One more VERY important thing...Make sure you do not transfer any of the other hives bees on those honey combs or you WILL have robbing.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Atlanta GA
    Posts
    276

    Default Re: Can I feed new package sugar water/honey

    Thank you both. jmgi they are not the same size. The brood is deep and the super is a medium. I sure don't want robbing. These hives will be right next to each other. Would that be an issue?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,833

    Default Re: Can I feed new package sugar water/honey

    You need to get the medium super cleaned out to get rid of the possible sugar syrup, so I would install the package into the deep and add the medium on top, however, I would not give them all the frames of honey at once, hopefully you have some extra medium frames of comb or foundation you could add in addition to the couple frames of honey. Reduce the entrance down to about an inch or so to prevent robbing. John

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,905

    Default Re: Can I feed new package sugar water/honey

    Give the new package a box full of capped "honey" and don't feed them at all...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oregon City, Oregon
    Posts
    988

    Default Re: Can I feed new package sugar water/honey

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    Give the new package a box full of capped "honey" and don't feed them at all...
    What he said, but I would go one further and put a queen excluder between the deep and medium unless you want brood and pollen all through your honey supers..But if it is drawn comb you will need for the bottom deep they wont draw much comb from honey you will need to feed 1:1 to get them building faster
    Honeydew

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Palm Bay, FL, USA
    Posts
    2,297

    Default Re: Can I feed new package sugar water/honey

    I would do as Michael Bush said. I would NOT use an excluder! Seems like you would want them to build up strong ASAP. If they raise brood in the honey super, so what? More brood=more bees=more honey=less feeding=less money spent on feed.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,844

    Default Re: Can I feed new package sugar water/honey

    >I can't harvest this sugar water honey
    If you want to keep your honey supers broodcombless, I would extract the mix and feed it back top them. If you don't mind brood comb in your supers let them at it.

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