Re: How long do I feed package bees?
fwiw, I feed my packages until they've drawn out all the comb and filled all the boxes I want them to winter in, or they stop taking the syrup, whichever comes first. As Peter mentioned, the odds are against them in nature. Your task is to increase the probability of their survival for the first year - you have to get them through the first winter. Everything else is secondary. Do not expect a honey crop this year, although you MIGHT get one, and if you do, that's a bonus. Just be sure to leave enough honey on them for winter and early next spring.
Another thing to remember, even after making it successfully through winter, many of the hives that die, starve in late February or March.
"If all you have is a hammer, the whole world is a nail." - A.H. Maslow