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  1. #21
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    Oct 2011
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    Santa Monica, CA, USA
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Interesting thread. Couple of thiings:
    - there is nothing new that pollen provide important nutrition to the bees. Even human use the pollen for exactly the same reason.
    - I do not think, that any substitute may actually substitute the real stuff. If I remember properly, pollen substitute is made mostly from corn "meat", yeasts and may be a few percent of real pollen...
    - honey and pollen complement each other.
    - feeding keep bees inside, it could limit their ability to harvest pollen.
    Серёжа, Sergey

  2. #22
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    Mar 2011
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    Utica, NY
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    So anyone not feeding at all must be just lucky with their winter success?
    Every living animal needs a balanced diet and exercise. Wiled animals don't have to worry about getting exercise they get it from foraging food. Humans watch television and get confused on what a balanced diet and exercise is. Pets and tame animals are at the mercy of confused humans watching television.

    Are your bees pets?
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    Lake County Ill
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    417

    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    [QUOTE=wcubed;935243]Not to cut in on your business, Kieth, but my answer is "none of the above."
    From 2000 to 2005, we applied the pollen box maneuver in the spring build up period. We got reliable wintering - almost guarenteed. Simple procedure - when the first shallow above the single deep was basically filled with expansion brood, it was placed below the deep. In the buildup, when pollen is plentiful, the brood in that now bottom shallow is or was reliably backfilled with beebread (long-term pollen).

    Beebread at the bottom is sacred until Aug. - when it's used to start fall expansion to rear wintering bees. With that beebread available at the end of our midsummer doldrums, wintering was much improved. Went from 25% weaklings in late winter to ALL fairly equal in strength in Feb. This was a late addition to my full-season mngt. We didn't see the natural tendency to store the "pollen reserve" below the brood until we went to the unlimited broodnest of checkerboarding. It's stored during buildup, while the cluster is growing upward.

    We believe it is standard procedure in the cylindrical tree hollow. Come late summer, the brood nest grows downward into the pollen reserve. Serves 2 purposes: Starts fall buildup for wintering bees and relocates the broodnest in the bottom, where they want it. Seems rather awkward to me to go the expense and work of doing it a different way when the bees have a format to make it happen their way.

    I get too much static when I talk about their preference for brood in a deep when the alternative is a shallow, Or their reluctance to jump the gap in comb at box joints, but both those observations play into my application of the pollen box maneuver. It WORKS.
    No protein feeding.

    Walt
    Wait
    Perhaps I did not understand fully but what you suggested makes sense to me. I use 2 deeps. Would I take my second deep when filled with brood and move it below the first or lower deep? o r did I misunderstand?

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
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    3,176

    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    well said 007,

    When doing any feeding whether it's syrup or sub it takes on a different role. Take two hives, ones heavy ones light, feed the light one and see what happens. Do the same with sub, feed the one that's light on pollen stores and you will see two out comes from the non fed hives.

    The hive takes on a different role when it feels it's coming in from outside the hive, when in fact, you just syrup or subed it, but the actions taken by the hive is completely different than if it were just stored pollen or honey inside the hive.
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  5. #25
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    Dec 2006
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    Amador County, Calif
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    3,176

    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Quote Originally Posted by wcubed View Post
    Not to cut in on your business, Kieth,
    I wish you would Walt, I am either mixing or shaking, Now these out-of-staters want to take some home with them as they leave.I set out to be a keeper not a dough boy. lol
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Herrick, SD USA
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    4,374

    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    It's also important to note that different pollens can have vastly different compositions. For those fortunate enough to have bees in an area with a lot of pollen diversity, a sub may not show nearly the same results as a mono cultural areas which, unfortunately, is fast becoming the new normal.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Lititz, PA, USA
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    709

    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Right. Location, location, location.

    Acebird, I def. don't say that those who don't feed sub are just lucky, they're just lucky enough to be in an area where it's not required during a decent year.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    Herrick, SD USA
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Quote Originally Posted by libhart View Post
    Right. Location, location, location.
    That pretty much sums it up.
    Keith apparently has more business than he knows what to do with and it ain't because he is buying big ads in the ABJ it's because the folks using it are seeing results.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  9. #29
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    Oct 2011
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    Santa Monica, CA, USA
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Quote Originally Posted by jim lyon View Post
    ... ain't because he is buying big ads in the ABJ it's because the folks using it are seeing results.
    Sort of twisted logic - if business is completely booked - why they need to invest money in big and expensive advertisement? Old economy teaches (me) that in such situation businessman should invest into expansion of the business, in equipment etc. Why advertise something, which is known to be good? Nothing personal.
    Серёжа, Sergey

  10. #30
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    Mar 2011
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    Utica, NY
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Quote Originally Posted by libhart View Post
    they're just lucky enough to be in an area where it's not required during a decent year.
    If the area cannot support a healthy bee should the bee be in that area permanently? Maybe this is why some people feel bees are dependent on human care.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  11. #31
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    Feb 2006
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    Herrick, SD USA
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Quote Originally Posted by cerezha View Post
    Sort of twisted logic - if business is completely booked - why they need to invest money in big and expensive advertisement? Old economy teaches (me) that in such situation businessman should invest into expansion of the business, in equipment etc. Why advertise something, which is known to be good? Nothing personal.
    I believe we are in agreement Sergey. I think word of mouth is what has increased his demand and outside of a shiny new Swinger and a truckload of blue paint only Keith could tell us how much money he has had to spend expanding his business . For all I know it's just a big writeoff to offset all his pollination income.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  12. #32
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    Aug 2008
    Location
    Elkton, Giles, Tennessee, USA
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    woodedareas,
    You can't Make it happen reliably with double deeps. There is something odd about the deep box and the way the colony uses it. We have all seen it, but perhaps not recognized that it is not like the tree cavity. For instance, they want brood to the bottom bar all the way across the brood nest. Makes for a flat-bottomed brood nest. Since that's what we see, it's "normal', but in the wild brood nest in the vertical tree hollow, the brood nest is rounded on the bottom. I think it has something to do with efficiency in insulating the cluster - a sphere has the least perimeter per contained volume.

    If you reverse double deeps, you still have the flat bottom nest. No place to add pollen below. Believe me, we still don't have a hive is based on their instincts.

    We didn't see this characteristic until we started gettng much larger brood nests with checkerboarding. When we turned them loose to grow all the brood nest they could in the season time allowed, some colonies were trying to create their pollen reserve below.
    To give them a little help, we put the shallow of brood below the deep during buildup in the early season, while the broodnest is growing upward. They readily backfill the shallow with fall beebread. I get some static for the observation that the bees prefer a deep for rearing brood, but this is one application of that preference.

    Walt

  13. #33
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    Dec 2006
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    Amador County, Calif
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    Big Grin Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Quote Originally Posted by jim lyon View Post
    only Keith could tell us how much money he has had to spend
    Ah Jimmy, if it took a nickel to go around the world, I couldn't make it to the first stop light.

    If I had Jimmy money, I would burn mine, but I couldn't even send up smoke.

    I'm so broke now I coundn't afford too pay attention.

    P.S. got to get back to shaken
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  14. #34
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    May 2011
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    Nashville, TN
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    320

    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Walt, after they use up the beebread in the bottom box in August, does that become a brood chamber or honey storage or remain empty until we pull it to checkerboard in February? I use all medium 8 frames and remember them filling the bottom one with beebread. But depending on whether they refill it with honey would determine whether I need to go into winter with 3 or 4 boxes. I would think that if they leave it empty, 3 boxes would leave them short on winter stores.

  15. #35
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    Aug 2008
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    Elkton, Giles, Tennessee, USA
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    tn07,
    It goes into winter empty - no stores. If the broodnest is in box 2, immediately above, it depends on whether or not they get the broodnest fully backfilled in the fall. That does not always happen here. Sometimes, when the broodnest doesn't get backfilled, they relocate up on solid capped honey (top box of 3 med). It's your call whether you want to insure in Nov that the broodnest gets backfilled or leave a forth box of honey at the top.
    W

  16. #36
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Belfast, Ireland
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    396

    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Quote Originally Posted by jim lyon View Post
    It's also important to note that different pollens can have vastly different compositions. For those fortunate enough to have bees in an area with a lot of pollen diversity, a sub may not show nearly the same results as a mono cultural areas which, unfortunately, is fast becoming the new normal.
    The Schmidt study mentioned in this bee culture article found that bees which foraged on Sunflowers live on average for 31 days as opposed to 51 days for bees collecting Canola pollen.

    L.S.Schmidt et al, Feeding preference and survival of young worker honey bees fed rape, sesame and sunflower pollen. J. of Econ. Entom. 88(6):1591-1595 (1995).

    1995 study4 divided bees into two groups: one fed solely with canola pollen, the other with sunflower pollen:

    Pollen Source Life Span of Bees

    Canola 51 days

    Sunflower 31 days

    This study was done well before the advent of CCD and the remarkable 20 day difference in life span could well cause sunflower bees that survived in past years to reach a tipping point in today’s world where they are confronted with the agents of CCD.

  17. #37
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    Oct 2011
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    Santa Monica, CA, USA
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    I am wondering, what is longevity of bees on on pollen substitute?
    Серёжа, Sergey

  18. #38
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Barrie, Ontario, Canada
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    459

    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Even if pollen is the main source of nutrients, it doesn't mean that honey isn't a better feed. When I first saw this headline, I thought that it was a bit sad that they had to do it.

    http://news.yahoo.com/best-rx-bees-o...214615930.html

    There was a time when it was generally accepted that formula was better than breast milk. It's hard to beat thousands/millions of years of evolution.
    Adam - Zone 5A
    www.adamshoney.com

  19. #39
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    Jul 2010
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Quote Originally Posted by cerezha View Post
    I am wondering, what is longevity of bees on on pollen substitute?
    i'll go out on a limb and say that there are probably no 'substitutes' as good as the real thing, but it may be that 'supplements' could have a positive effect if they help fill in the gaps in cases where the natural forage is lacking.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  20. #40
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    Apr 2011
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    Weeki Wachee, Florida,USA
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    Default Re: rethinking bee nutrition

    Quote Originally Posted by zhiv9 View Post
    There was a time when it was generally accepted that formula was better than breast milk
    Who feeds bees breast milk?

    The source of Vitellogenin is easy enough (egg yolk) but how effective can bees digest it and what can be added to improve the efficiency of this protein.

    Is there anything to suggest that when bees are given Sub during a time when pollen is available they will target pollens rich in substances they lack?

    JimL,
    What is needed as additional mite control as a result of feeding protein and what does that look like as practical application in your operation?

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