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Thread: Feeding advice

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Lawrenceville, NJ, USA
    Posts
    13

    Default Feeding advice

    I recently lost a couple of colonies, both had their upper big box filled with frames of honey. What is the best way to use this extra feed (not adequate for extraction since it is a mix of syrup and honey). I was thinking of putting new packages into those two hives. Could I use the extra frames of honey to feed them? What can I do and how can I do it?
    Thanks,
    Jean-Pierre

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    3,969

    Default Re: Feeding advice

    You can use the honey to good advantage in your new colony if you are certain that the bees did not die from foulbrood or apparently CCD I just learned. How did your bees die? Were they dead in the hive? Just gone? Was there sunken and perforated brood? You should establish what killed them before you decide.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    4,531

    Default Re: Feeding advice

    good evening jp.

    i am thinking that the new packages would benefit more from having empty comb that stored syrup honey, especially if there is a nectar flow when your packages arrive.

    i would consider uncapping those frames, and putting one or two at a time out for the new bees to clean up. hopefully they will use that along with the natural forage to raise their first rounds of brood.

    then, let them fill that drawn comb with real honey. i am of the opinion that they will be healthier and stand a better chance of overwintering if they don't have to rely on sugar.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Pinellass County, Florida
    Posts
    1,110

    Default Re: Feeding advice

    I would put the packages in and and let them
    take over where the others left off

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,864

    Default Re: Feeding advice

    You don't get foulbrood and ccd losses in the middle of the winter, use the honey for new hives. John

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    3,770

    Default Re: Feeding advice

    Sure, I'd let them have at it!
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Lawrenceville, NJ, USA
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: Feeding advice

    Thank for the guidance. How many frames of honey/syrup should I have in the box with the new package? Having them uncapped, as suggested by squarepeg seems logical. Thoughts?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    4,531

    Default Re: Feeding advice

    i was suggesting uncapping them and putting them out in the yard (maybe 150 feet away from the hives) and letting the bees clean them up. if you do it early enough in the season, the bees will use that for their spring build up, and you'll have some empty comb to catch the real honey.

    i put some real honey out in the yard the other day, about 3/4 of a deep frame that i harvested from a winter loss. they had it cleaned up in a few hours.

    we are just now starting to get good flying weather, and there is some forage, but not what i would call a 'flow' yet.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,127

    Default Re: Feeding advice

    Capped stores are the best feed for a package. It reduces robbing and gives them a head start.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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