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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    rbees answer is indeed excellent.

    Apparently I stayed up so late that I answered post #16 twice, and one while sleep deprived... lesson learned (sorry)

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    West Bath, Maine, United States
    Posts
    1,143

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Stay sleep deprived. I liked both answers.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Montgomery County, NY
    Posts
    1,935

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Cynthia I just walked outside with short sleeve shirt on and it wasn't horribly cold. I think around 1pm would be an excellent time for you to check the amount of honey you have left in your hive. If its low put on your entrance reducer and dump granulated sugar on top of them. Dont worry about it hitting the bees. Just dont leave them open too long today.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Columbia County, NY
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Thank everyone! Great info as I am just learning! I specifically mentioned that I was a backyard beekeeper because I do not have any intention of growing to more than 2 or 3 hives. I'm ok with letting the bees do their thing (ie swarm) and my goal, like yours Beregondo, is to support healthy colony of bees with no drug or pesticide treatments and require little or no feeding. I'm truly in the "hobbiest" category and enjoy learning about bees. If I get a few jars of honey out of this, I'd be delighted. All that said, I'm not adverse to doing what I can to help the bees out if it means getting them through winter. I've read that this is the time of year that many hives starve to death. I left their full honey super on heading into winter and if adding a pollen patty now through spring will help get them through - then, I'm in! So, is adding a pollen patty and raw sugar in a windless day w/temps around 40 the right thing, for me, to do at this point? I'm struggling with the decision of whether to risk opening the hive in these still cold temps to feed or just leave them be?

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Montgomery County, NY
    Posts
    1,935

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    you will be fine. Just dont leave it open longer than needed to check and feed!

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Cynthia,

    I'm trying to produce as many nucs as I can this year to increase my hive count.
    Consequently, i want my bees to build up population as soon as possible so that they can be spit to multiply my numbe of hives as many times as possible.

    That's why i am feeding patties.

    If I were only wanting to let the bees alone and be healthy, and wasn't worried about getting a crop of honey or of more bees to make more colonies form, I wouldn't be feeding patties.

    I'd go out this afternoon or tomorrow, and check how much honey my bees have (Tilt the top box on end and peek up the bottom... see how much honey comb is still closed up..if it is too heavy to tilt this way, it has plenty and you don't need to look).

    If they have a couple combs, leave them alone for a couple weeks and check again.

    Feeding won't hurt them, and if you are not sure, then put a sheet of poaper on the top bars and pour some sugar on it.

    If you decide to give them a patty, it is important to keep giving them patties until they are bringing in pollen on their own, so deciding to start is a little bit of a commitment.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Vernonia Or
    Posts
    88

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Thanks for the replys. I especially liked your input Beregondo. Right now I'm pretty much just a sponge soaking up different approaches. I'm listening to everything and trying to find the common ground that pops up between philosophies. I'm only going to have a couple hives and just want to learn, keep things kinda simple and not make things a headache. I just want to try and keep a decent environment for the bees -- any extra honey will be a plus or reward.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    King County, Washington
    Posts
    84

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Beregondo View Post
    I figure shorter lived bees will produce more than the bees I won't get without feeding.
    Ka-Ching!

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    syracuse n.y.
    Posts
    2,031

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    so Cynthia have you figured out from the pollen sub fight when to put it on? I don't use them, but if your hive is heavy enough, put them on, if they don't need or want they won't use them, two things to remember if they use the pollen they need enough honey to feed the brood so you must monitor it, right now the weather is not warm enough to feed sugar water, and if you stimulate the bees to raise more brood early, the mites are also stimulated and your mite count goes up sooner, so monitor that. good luck and keep records so you learn and will have a better idea for next year.
    mike syracuse ny
    I went to bed mean, and woke up meaner. Marshal Dillon

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,593

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    It has been at least hinted at in the above, and perhaps someone outright said it, but adult bees do not eat nor do they need pollen. They will not starve for lack of pollen. They can't raise brood without pollen.

    If the issue is them starving, there are options as far as feeding, but if the hive is not light I would not worry about it.
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfeeding.htm
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  11. #31
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    King County, Washington
    Posts
    84

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    I disagree Michael. The first thing adult bees do when emerging is feed on honey and pollen...or pollen supplement. Adult bees DO consume pollen

  12. #32
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    4,176

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    rbee does a bee that emerges instantly become an adult? Are those fuzzy little cuties instantly ready for guard duty or foraging? Nah! They need to grow up first to adulthood. They indeed eat pollen to get that done and do nurse bee duties. after that, they do not eat pollen.

  13. #33
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    West Bath, Maine, United States
    Posts
    1,143

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Put it on the plate, it's gone, someone ate it.

  14. #34
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,593

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Adult bees consume pollen in order to convert it to royal jelly and feed brood. But they do not consume pollen for their own needs. Does a newly emerged bee eat some royal jelly out of the brood cells? Probably. Does a new emerged bee eat pollen? Only if they are feeding young. But it's really irrelevant anyway. The point is that the adult bees in the colony are not going to be deprived of nourishment because you didn't feed them pollen, nor are they going to be provided with nourishment if you do feed pollen and we KNOW they will get inadequate nourishment from pollen substitute if they are trying to feed young bees, which they probably won't do much of until they have a supply of pollen. There is no need to give a "pollen" patty because you think they may be running out of stores...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  15. #35
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    West Bath, Maine, United States
    Posts
    1,143

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    MB, All kidding aside the thread has wandered from do I need to feed? Your answer; No. Agree.
    Wandered to; When do I feed if for a specific result. Most of the replys.
    Sort of like your take on feeding syrup. Sometimes yes, sometimes no, but not blindly.
    Myself, I didn't like the amount of pollen stored last fall, so trying for sub not too soon and not too late.

  16. #36
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ankeny, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    598

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Michael, do you feel pollen patty's are a waste of money or is there a time when you would consider them beneficial?

  17. #37
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,593

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    >Michael, do you feel pollen patty's are a waste of money or is there a time when you would consider them beneficial?

    There are times when I consider feeding REAL pollen beneficial. But that is a far cry from pollen substitute. The most "watered down" I'm willing to do is 50% substitute and 50% real pollen when I really think there is a need and I don't have enough real pollen. And then I feed it dry in an empty hive. About the only times I ever feed pollen are when I see the bees gathering grain dust or saw dust and I think there is a pollen dearth. In the spring when the packages come in there is no pollen dearth. Earlier in the spring there is no pollen dearth, but it's too cold to gather it and not gathering it keeps them from rearing brood too early. Rearing brood too early is my primary cause of losses in the winter. I certainly don't want to encourage the primary cause of my winter losses...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  18. #38
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ankeny, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    598

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Thank you for the explanation!

  19. #39
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    King County, Washington
    Posts
    84

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    [QUOTE=Michael Bush;900892]Adult bees consume pollen in order to convert it to royal jelly and feed brood. /QUOTE]

    And that is exactly what I expressed in my first post. I will also disagree somewhat with the notion that adult bees do not benefit individually from consuming pollen or in this topic pollen supplements. Vitelogenin even in adult bees is the fountain of youth protein in bees.

  20. #40
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    King County, Washington
    Posts
    84

    Default Re: When to add pollen patty ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vance G View Post
    rbee does a bee that emerges instantly become an adult? Are those fuzzy little cuties instantly ready for guard duty or foraging? Nah! They need to grow up first to adulthood. They indeed eat pollen to get that done and do nurse bee duties. after that, they do not eat pollen.
    I disagree completely.

    First off...they are adults when they emerge.

    Second...those bees that overwinter especially in colder climates are two to three months old when the queen begins laying again, well past the "nurse bee" age. They do indeed consume pollen for vitellogenin production.

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