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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Dunlap, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    15

    Default When do I pull the feeders?

    This is my first year beekeeping. It has been a dream of mine for quite some time, and remained so, due to the fact that the startup costs were too much for me. Well, this year I managed to scrape up enough to get started with 5 colonies.
    A little about me: I live in west central Iowa on a 600 acre family farm and run a kiln dried hardwood lumber business as well as a sawmill. On this farm, I have 300 acres of native timber which has been taken out of production for quite some time now to let it revert back to its natural state. By out of production, I mean no spraying, no grazing, and logging of trees that are already down and dead. I guess you could say it's my personal playground shared only with the new bees and my two small children. As far as the bees go, well, the bug has bit me and the kids and I plan on increasing the number of colonies next year substantially. It is a great feeling to see a dream come true.
    My first question: When do I stop feeding the bees?? Two out of the five colonies have already filled the bottom brood boxes on new foundation and I have added the second boxes, which have been on for four days as of now. I have had some local folks tell me to remove the feeders when the second brood box is added. Is that what I should do?? I happily welcome any advice you might have for a guy new at this fascinating world. Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Reidsville, NC
    Posts
    114

    Default Re: When do I pull the feeders?

    Welcome to the fun; I hope that you will enjoy as much as we all do.

    As for the feeders; I leave them on until they have 80% of the comb built out in the 2 deeps. Then super the hive.
    Experience is better than theory.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Posts
    86

    Default Re: When do I pull the feeders?

    This year feed until they will not take it and have two deeps drawn out. Since they don't like to draw out the outside frames in 10 frame deeps, move them in a couple of frames after you have eight started. Let them fill the outside ones with your Surgar "Honey" the get a super on and feeder off.

    My$.02
    I'm like the weatherman- right about half of the time.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Big Stone Gap, VA
    Posts
    988

    Default Re: When do I pull the feeders?

    In the spring, as long as they have some stores, and there is a flow on, we quit feeding. Everyone has a different opinion on this.

    Shane

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Baytown, TX., USA.
    Posts
    651

    Default Re: When do I pull the feeders?

    Do any of you feed patties? How much of that should be fed. I am/have fed two lbs per hive. Too much, ok, or need more?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Alachua County, FL, USA
    Posts
    7,056

    Default Re: When do I pull the feeders?

    Welcome DBF! Local knowlege is best for when and how much to feed. In nature they do not usually work the outside combs, but what do bees know.
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Dunlap, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: When do I pull the feeders?

    Thank you all so much for your advice. Yesterday I discovered I have chalkbrood in two of my five hives. New bees are present and the queen is laying a good pattern. I guess all I can do now is hope, right?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Baytown, TX., USA.
    Posts
    651

    Default Re: When do I pull the feeders?

    From what I read you could re-queen with Minnesota Hygienic type queens and solve that problem. I personally look for the hygienic trait in bees I buy. Good luck and keep us posted.

    My three hives are beginning to slow down on eating the patties so maybe that is self limiting as some have suggested.

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