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Thread: My Feeders

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Vermontville, Michigan
    Posts
    88

    Default My Feeders

    I meant to put this up last year, but I decided to wait and see if it worked out well, and then I kind of forgot. Anyways, right after hiving my first two packages, I was headed out of town for a weekend of camping, and since I couldn't convince anyone to come over and feed my bees for me, I had to come up with a solution that would keep them fed from Thursday morning to Monday afternoon/evening. I had tried the baggie feeder, but that only lasted about two days. My solution? Chicken waterers!

    102_1124.jpg


    They hold a gallon of syrup, they have shallow trays which I fill with small/medium sized rocks to give the girls something to land on/hold on to/crawl out of the syrup if they fall in, and the best part is that sitting them on the top bars with an empty deep above they fit perfectly inside the hive. I had zero bees drown in them, and they last much longer than the baggie feeder, they don't leak, they're plastic (so, durable). I have not yet figured out any downside to using them, and they cost around 5 dollars if you can catch them on sale. Maybe it's not an original idea at all, maybe lots of people do it, but I'm putting it out there anyways.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Portland, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    240

    Default Re: My Feeders

    BB,

    You said you have had zero bees drown, how did you manage that? I use those quite often but have to make a screen to block hole in feeder to keep bees from crawling inside & drowning. It looks like yours might be a little different, mine don't have wire handles.
    Beeman
    All things may be lawful; but not all things are advantagous.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Vermontville, Michigan
    Posts
    88

    Default Re: My Feeders

    I don't see any way they could crawl into the hole on mine, so maybe that's the difference. By the time the syrup level gets low enough that they could crawl in, there's really no syrup left in the top at all, just in the tray. The rocks in the tray prevent them from drowning down there, because I leave such small gaps between the rocks that they would really have to work to get down in there. I used these for about 2 months until there was a good flow on and they stopped taking it, and each time I'd pull them out to fill them I'd look for dead bees, and never found one.

    Edit: http://www.tractorsupply.com/harris-...pacity-2167654 is a link to the feeders I bought at Tractor Supply. You can't see the hole in this picture either, but if you're near a TSC, you could look at them and see if there is a difference in the flow system.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    IG, Slovenia
    Posts
    21

    Default Re: My Feeders

    Some people use bird feeders. Never heard of chicken feeders hehe! What materials are they made of?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Kalamazoo,MI
    Posts
    325

    Default Re: My Feeders

    I've used a few different brands of chicken waterers on my hives lately. Some models you have to block the hole with screen. When the jar becomes empty, the bees climb in and die. I have been using a coil of 3/4 nylon rope in the tray instead of rocks or marbles. Makes it easier to refill.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Vermontville, Michigan
    Posts
    88

    Default Re: My Feeders

    The rope is a fantastic idea, tefer. I finally got tired of loading the rocks back in after every time I filled it so I glued them in place. I didn't have the bees dying inside the feeder as it got empty, maybe this has a larger opening or something that they can get back out of easier. They were definitely in there, and in fact I had to pull burr comb out from inside the feeder a few times.

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