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Thread: Appetites

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    Charlotte, NC
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    Default Appetites

    Will honeybees always eat or take what's best for them? I recently saw a video of honeybees open feeding on tea tree and wintergreen oils in a birdbath. I've heard how treating with those oils can be harmful to the helpful bacteria in their gut, even though the oils come from organic sources. So is this stuff like crack, in that they just can't help themselves even though it's bad for them, or are they telling us that these oils actually are good for them?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
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    Denver, Colorado
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    Default Re: Appetites

    They'll take sawdust in late winter too.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Worcester County, Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Appetites

    Crack is a perfect analogy. Concentrations so high that they would never occur in nature....therefore nature isn't really equipped to deal with it.

    Deknow
    The irony is free. It's the sarcasm you are paying for....ironically.
    -Felicity Jones in "Chalet Girl"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    Myrtle Beach, SC, USA
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    Default Re: Appetites

    Is sawdust bad for them?
    https://www.facebook.com/stevesbees99
    Please visit my page, Thanks

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Appetites

    Wish I knew. Doesn't seem to hurt them. I've heard it may be related to propolis.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    45,889

    Default Re: Appetites

    >Is sawdust bad for them?

    They seem to be gathering it for pollen. It's not nutritious...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Bloomfield,KY
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    Default Re: Appetites

    When I worked for a flour blending facility the bees would pick up flour. Everything from corn to rice flour from spills outside, depending on pollen flows it could be a few bees to several hundred. My own hives would collect the scrap flour I would bring home for my steers.
    "Of all God's creatures, only the honeybee improves its environment and preys on no other species."--Haydon Brown

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Aberdeen, Idaho
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    Default Re: Appetites

    This habit is why you provide them with quality pollen substitute in the dry form. Our bees are taking it readily now and will until the first natural pollen come along.
    Dave

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Charlotte, NC
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    Default Re: Appetites

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Burrup View Post
    This habit is why you provide them with quality pollen substitute in the dry form. Our bees are taking it readily now and will until the first natural pollen come along.
    Dave
    What substitute do you use and why that particular type. How does one determine what is the best substitute, and why would you use a sub if you can buy a regional / local pollen (I've never understood using substitutes when actual pollen is available either harvested or bought)? It makes sense to me to harvest pollen with a trap from your own hives throughout the year, store it in the freezer and feed it back to them when they need it. I have been totally confused on the entire pollen patty thing from the get-go.
    Last edited by Tom Davidson; 03-13-2013 at 07:45 AM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
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    3,876

    Default Re: Appetites

    The wintergreen oil is fed properly emulsified into syrup I am sure, because it is much harder on the mites than it is on the bees. I feed it for one brood cycle in the spring to kill mites. It is medicine, you don't give it to them all the time. If you can control mites without chemicals, it is indeed better.

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