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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cochise County, AZ, USA
    Posts
    8

    Default Syrup drained into hive, twice

    I installed 2 packages a week ago. One hive seems to be doing very well and I am feeding them 1:1 syrup in jars with holes poked in the lid on top of the inner cover, then a shallow super, then the outer cover. In my second hive, for some reason the syrup has dripped out of the jars and gone all over the cover and into the hive. (I am using a screened bottom board so a good deal of it is on the ground, but the cover and the entrance and the hive stand are obviously covered in sugar syrup. This happened yesterday and today... I guess the jar wasn't exactly level???? Even though I sat and watched the syrup and made sure it wasn't leaking... then I went back a few hours later and it was all drained out all over the place.

    Anyway, my biggest question is... have I damaged the entire hive? Will they just lick up the sugar and look elsewhere for food (since the jar has now been empty a good part of two days?

    I have successfully added a new jar and have checked that it isn't leaking (new wood sticks that I guess are more level).

    Also, the bees numbers seem to be down. Maybe they are out looking for food, but the other hive seems to have lots more bees and lots more comb. I don't want to open the hive again to check everyone out since i think this would be counter productive.

    Should I just keep on feeding them successfully and hope they recover? or take some other action at this time?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Summerville Ga. USA
    Posts
    116

    Default Re: Syrup drained into hive, twice

    It sounds like you have a leak but sometimes a large temp swing will cause this. The syrup gets cold at night and as it warms during the day it expands and loses vacuum and the bees can't keep up with the flow. Also if the hive is full of syrup the bees will bail on you. You might want to take the bottom board off and wash it off.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Madison, WI, USA
    Posts
    175

    Default Re: Syrup drained into hive, twice

    I switched from jars to baggies last year because of similar problems. I just lay the baggie on top of the inner cover and put an empty medium on top of that, with the outer cover on top of the empty medium. No leaks, no mess, bees use every drop and then I just replace with a fresh full baggie. 1 gallon size works for me.
    life is finite while knowledge is infinite. - Zhuang Zi

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Pinellass County, Florida
    Posts
    1,105

    Default Re: Syrup drained into hive, twice

    Watch out for Ants

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cochise County, AZ, USA
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Syrup drained into hive, twice

    Thanks for the replies. The temp. change could be it, but more likely I think the wooden support may have been in contact with a few of the holes I punched in the lid and possibly wicked the solution right out of the jar??? So I have replaced the lid with one with fewer holes, washed the exterior of the bottom board (the interior is a screen and I am hedging my bets that it isn't too bad in there), don't want to dislodge the hive and check since the bees seem better today... more activity. I have also placed a bigger jar on the outside of the hive hoping they have enough food. It went down to freezing here last night and I know they need it.

    I am watching for ants and figure they will soon discover the sugar... if they infest the area I'll be back on teh boards asking for solutions...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,586

    Default Re: Syrup drained into hive, twice

    I read on here that bees will not take cold syrup. They like the warm syrup better. So if the outside temp is very cold at night
    time then the sun has to warm them up before the bees will take them I supposed. I tried the wick method but it seems the
    syrup will spoil before the bees can finish them. I don't like changing syrup every few days. So I switched to the wicked
    baggie inside feeder to control the amount of syrup I gave them.

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