Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Meadow Vista, Ca
    Posts
    3

    Default Need advice on sugar syrup and when to add on to hive

    Hello, what a wonderful forum, Iím really learning a lot. This is my first year as a beekeeper and I have a couple of questions if you donít mind. I only have one beemax hive body for a 3# package we bought last April.

    Iím not sure how much honey they have so I started giving them some 2:1 sugar syrup a few weeks ago. They were going thru a qt a day but theyíve really slowed now, maybe 3/4 of a qt in 4 days now. Should I keep giving the syrup to them as long as theyíre taking it?
    When should I start giving them 1:1 sugar?

    I bought a medium super to add to it but Iím not sure when the best time to do that. Iíve also read that 2 hives would be better, so I wonder if I should try to start another hive instead or just wait until next year?

    Iím in No. Cal, zone 8. Some of the bees are active during the day, a few sometimes have a little bit of pollen when they return.

    Thanks for any advice, sure appreciate it.

    Patty

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Walker, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    943

    Default Re: Need advice on sugar syrup and when to add on to hive

    I’m not sure how much honey they have so I started giving them some 2:1 sugar syrup a few weeks ago.
    Sounds like you need to inspect your hive and visually verify how much honey you have. Do you have an experienced beekeeper nearby? A club maybe? It sounds like you need help from someone who knows what they are seeing so they can explain it to you and guide you through the whole year's process.

    JMO

    Rusty
    Rusty Hills Farm -- home of AQHA A Rusty Zipper & Rusty's Bees ( LC and T)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,563

    Default Re: Need advice on sugar syrup and when to add on to hive

    Welcome to Beesource!

    Quote Originally Posted by homesteader View Post
    Should I keep giving the syrup to them as long as they’re taking it?
    I agree with Rusty that it would be a good idea to choose a warm day to inspect your hive to see what their stores really are. You may be interested reading more about feeding here:

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfeeding.htm

    It appears that you are located high enough that cold weather, and consequently condensation inside the hive can be a problem. If you do need to feed during cold periods consider using one of the methods to feed dry sugar or candy to avoid adding additional moisture into the hive.

    Quote Originally Posted by homesteader View Post
    I bought a medium super to add to it but I’m not sure when the best time to do that.
    An inspection will help with this issue. If the bees have built comb on 80% of the frames in the existing boxes, and flowers are starting to bloom, add a super.

    Quote Originally Posted by homesteader View Post
    I’ve also read that 2 hives would be better, so I wonder if I should try to start another hive instead or just wait until next year?
    This is a good time to order bees for this year. But don't dally!
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

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

    Default Re: Need advice on sugar syrup and when to add on to hive

    Quote Originally Posted by Rusty Hills Farm View Post
    Sounds like you need to inspect your hive and visually verify how much honey you have. Do you have an experienced beekeeper nearby? A club maybe? It sounds like you need help from someone who knows what they are seeing so they can explain it to you and guide you through the whole year's process.

    JMO

    Rusty
    I agree with Rusty. While I am a Newbeek, June2012 start, I now have 3 hives and did a lot of feeding to get them started and just before winter hit, such that it is in Houston. Well we have been in the 60-70's lately so the bees have been out and about. I had to add two med. frames to my deeps to get some comb built before I pick up my 2 packages of bees from BeeWeaver on 6 April. I did an inspection of my top deeps so I could put an empty med. foundationless frame in the middle of each of two hives. Doing my inspection I had 7 full frames of honey and only the center one was eaten out and replaced with brood. I did not go into the lower deeps. I do not think that I need to feed any more this year, except for the new package hive installs in April to get them started.
    However I prefer to not go into the hives when the weather is below 68F (65F is the normal accepted minimum I have seen). You absolutely do not want to chill the center cluster where the brood area is as you will have large die offs.
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Meadow Vista, Ca
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Need advice on sugar syrup and when to add on to hive

    Thank you Rusty. One of my problems is it hasn’t been warm enough for inspection. I didn’t take any of their honey last season, to make sure they had enough for the winter. Then I read that the honey stores were based on weight and since I only have one hive body, I knew there couldn’t be enough honey stored for them. So I added the sugar syrup and they emptied it in one day. So I kept giving it to them, thinking it wouldn’t do any harm. They continued to consume a qt a day even when the night temps dropped to 19 for several days. Now they’ve really slowed down so I wasn’t sure if I should leave it or not.
    My mom had honeybees many years ago so I hoped that would be a good source of information. She does give advice when she can but she never worried about enough honey or feeding hers thru the winter so she can’t help with that. I’m not aware of any local clubs.

    Thank you for the welcome Graham. I will read that link you gave and study up on using the dry sugar. That sounded pretty easy but I was reluctant to open the top until it warms up. But I sure don’t want to add moisture if that’s a problem for them.
    Thanks for the precise answer on when to add the super. I think I will add it as soon as it warms enough to inspect the hive, at least I’ll have it ready. I only have one hive body, nothing else. I assume there will still be comb on all the frames after they consume the honey?
    I would like to increase the hives using the bees I have, rather than getting another package. I’m just not sure this is the right time, I had planned to wait another year. But if it’s better for them I’ll give it a try now.

    Thanks Mike, sounds like you’re doing great. It’s still too cold here, low 60’s at best. It is suppose to be 66 on Friday, that will be the warmest day I can see for awhile.

    I think I may try addng another hive to this one instead of the super, to see if I can get another hive started. I’ll need to order it but it should be here before the weather gets warm enough for an inspection. If not then I’m sure I’ll be able to use it eventually.
    Guess I need to get some more supers too.

    Thanks everyone, I feel less anxious now. Some of the bees came out when it was 40 today. There’s more flying about now. I haven’t seen any dead bees in awhile, is that good or bad?

    Patty
    Zone 8b elevation 1,875
    95722

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,563

    Default Re: Need advice on sugar syrup and when to add on to hive

    Quote Originally Posted by homesteader View Post
    I would like to increase the hives using the bees I have, rather than getting another package.
    If you want another hive, but don't want to buy more bees, consider doing a split:
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beessplits.htm


    P.S. You can click on Settings>My Settings> Edit Signature to create a signature, so you don't need to add it to each post. See the top of this page for Settings.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Meadow Vista, Ca
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Need advice on sugar syrup and when to add on to hive

    That's what I was thinking of doing, thank you. I need to learn these terms. Actually I just want to prevent them from swarming but since it's better to have at least 2 hives, I'll give this a try.

    P.S. Thank you
    Patty
    Zone 8b elevation 1,875 95722

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads