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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Chennai, India
    Posts
    18

    Default Sugar syrup feeder

    As the hives available here have a small bee entrance opening, I tried a few open feeders, but see bees getting drowned. I tried something different, a plastic sheet (ziploc cover) with holes floating on sugar syrup in a pot. The bees can sit on top of the sheet and drink, but needs to be perfected as there is still gaps when the sheet goes down. I am unable to attach pictures here...the icon doesn't seem to work.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Park City Ky
    Posts
    1,896

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    For open feeding I have not found anything that will beat the old hog feeder troughs. I use several of them each year. Just be careful to not feed more than they can take, at any one trough, during daylight hours, and there will be virtually no drowned bees. The bees that get in the syrup will be licked clean as soon as the syrup is gone. I normally place about one gallon in each feeder, they will take it by about 3PM and before dark all the bees will be gone. The troughs are made of 1 X 12, and are about 20 inches long.

    Also I have it elevated about three feet of the ground so they can take off heavy. If you try this system, (and they are easy to build) pour the syrup from the end, so you do not get syrup on the side boards. If you pour from the sides the bees will get stuck tracking through the syrup.

    If anyone is interested, i can take a photo of the feeders now, but, it has been too cool lately to feed. If we get a warm day, I will take a photo to show how it works.

    cchoganjr

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Chennai, India
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Thank you. Please post a pic...I will upload one when this works.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston, Texas, USA
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    I would be interested in seeing what it looks like too.
    Thanks
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

  5. #5

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Another idea. Scroll down a couple of photos to see how it is made.
    http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...mmunity-feeder
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston, Texas, USA
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Quote Originally Posted by beemandan View Post
    Another idea. Scroll down a couple of photos to see how it is made.
    http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...mmunity-feeder
    That is a pretty easy one to build. FBM does that type too, but your pictures show it better.
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Chennai, India
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Bee Feeding2.jpgBee Feeding1.jpg

    The blue lid is a ziploc container cover (with holes) floating on sugar syrup.....This is not perfect yet, although it works!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Park City Ky
    Posts
    1,896

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    One problem I can see with this system, but, could be overcome is, the bees are heavy when full of sugar syrup and having to lift straight up to fly out of the container is not optimal. If this system were on a slant where they can crawl up to the edge then take off, would be better.

    Looks like this system has merit, might work on it to see what could be done.

    Thanks for posting it.

    cchoganjr

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Park City Ky
    Posts
    1,896

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Here are two photos of the hog trough type bee feeders that I use. I described them above. Virtually no drowning.

    Bee Feeder Hog Trough (2).jpg

    Bee Feeder, Hog Trough.jpg

    cchoganjr

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Rupert, Idaho, USA
    Posts
    86

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Thanks for the photos cchoganjr! That looks like it might even be within my wretched carpentering abilities.
    jim

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Chennai, India
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    I tried a small cylindrical vessel (2-3 inches high, 1-1.5 inch dia) with a floating plastic corrugated sheet with holes. I also used a wooden stick as a slant from floater to vessel top to see if they need to crawl....with the little opening between the circumference and sheet, the bees align along the edges to drink and crawl along the surface to the brim. Looks like there's no chance of drowning which is what I wanted to ensure while trying these....Thanks for your comments and suggestions.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Park City Ky
    Posts
    1,896

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    shmiusa.... The aligning of the bees along the edges is what I have found with the hog troughs. The large, bevel, on the troughs give the bees plenty of room to land, then crawl down to the syrup. If we get a good warm day I will try to put out a little sugar water and take a photo of the bees filling up. I also have learned that if too much syrup is in the container for the bees to clean by mid-afternoon, the bees that do get in the syrup will die, however, if the bees take all the syrup by mid-afternoon, they will then lick and clean any bees that were saturated and there will be virtually no dead bees.

    Thanks again.

    cchoganjr

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Chennai, India
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Feeder1.jpgHi Cleo, Thanks for your comments. The feeding with this floater method worked great, but I think the container got emptied in 2-3 hours!! I used 1 cup of sugar in 1.5 cup of water. With other methods (open feeding), it used to last for 2-3 days. There was no drowning now, but I saw one or two dead presumably because of overload of sugar?

    Our climate here is tropical, (supposed to be) winter temp (Nov-Feb) is 80 deg F. Due to rains, our bee expert here suggested feeding.

    Questions: 1. Is feeding necessary in our climate here in South India? 2. How often & Qty?

    PHP Code:
    I also have learned that if too much syrup is in the container for the bees to clean by mid-afternoonthe bees that do get in the syrup will die, however, if the bees take all the syrup by mid-afternoonthey will then lick and clean any bees that were saturated and there will be virtually no dead bees
    ....are you referring to overfeeding here?
    thanks, Shankar
    Attached Images Attached Images

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Park City Ky
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    1,896

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Unfortunately I can't comment on what is best in India. I don't know enough about your seasons and how much honey it takes to sustain your colonies. Your bee expert is likely telling you the pollen and nectar has been washed out due to the rain, and you might need to feed until more flowers open. If your average temperature is 80 fahrenheit, your bees should always have enough honey to sustain themselves. I can't believe that they would ever cluster and consume solely stored honey while clustered and not continue making honey.

    Reference your last comment.... No, not overfeeding, just if I put more syrup in the open troughs than they can consume before dark, the bees that are in the syrup, or walked through the syrup will not get licked off. The bees will continue to feed until dark, and overnight those sticky bees will likely die. If the container is emptied with lots of bees still at the feeder, they will lick and clean other bees and the feeder. So, I only put as much syrup as I think they will consume by mid afternoon. This is based on number of hives in the area, and how much syrup the feeders will hold.

    cchoganjr

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Belews Creek, NC, USA
    Posts
    334

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    IMG_0470.jpgI made a 5 gal. open feeder as described in another thread. Works great. Bees love it. Only a very few drowned bees. The only downside is the fact that you can't target a particular hive to increase its weight as you can with a dedicated feeder.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Park City Ky
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    1,896

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Belewsboy...Everything has a down side. The problem with dedicated feeding is, it leads to robbing the very hive you are trying to build up. I fought robbing and open feeding for a month this year, trying to get about 35 built up enough to go through the Winter. They came back from pumpkin patches with almost no stores for winter, (very hot dry Summer), so I put out open feeding and dedicated feeding through the top, reduced entrances, and now all I do is hope they make it.

    cchoganjr

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Columbia, Missouri
    Posts
    47

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Here is my feeder.

    http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...n+super+feeder

    I have since modified it by roughing up the inside of the box so that the bees can climb out. I agree that some bees overload and cannot fly directely out of the box.

    Another modification that I have tried is surrounding the entire floating board with fiberglass window screen (staple on the back side with an everyday office stapler). With that in place the bees cannot get tipped over and stuck in the syrup.

    I have fed over 650# of sugar this fall with this feeder and the drowning as been very minimal.

    Carl Korschgen

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,199

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    I like making a 2 by 4 cross float in my open feed barrels and then cover with straw. the 2 by 4s keep the straw from getting water logged. I have very minimal drowning issues since moving to this kind of float system. You cant beat straw! Its cheap and expendable
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Belews Creek, NC, USA
    Posts
    334

    Default Re: Sugar syrup feeder

    Cleo C. Hogan Belewsboy...Everything has a down side.
    I did find an up side to open feeding...the ants are at the bucket feeder, not invading my hives as what happens when I use top feeders. Man they were bad this year!

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