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Thread: Feed Buckets

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    Lakeland, FL, USA
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    58

    Default Feed Buckets

    1 or 2 gal? Screen type feeder hole or plug with holes drilled in it? Currently have one gallons with a plug and some drilled holes. Thinking of switching to some 2 gal. Your thoughts?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Reddick, FL (Ocala)
    Posts
    126

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    Am using 2gal w/drilled holes personally. Lasts tad longer.

    Stole the idea when was at Dadant. They use a pile of buckets stacked on pallet. When they are empty, the wind blows them over, they know time to refill<--warehouse guy who gets to fill them.

    So I bought bucket there, lol. Have a fire ant issue at my farm, so have to feed away from hives until cold pushes ants down again. I get about 3-5 days of 1:1 for two nucs/growing hives. Intermittent rain has pushed flowers back several times now. When the flowers do come back, they stop feeding from buckets, lasts about 10 days (have few drops of bleach added). Anybody @ buckets that doesn't belong (Yellow jackets, etc) gets the stick test (squish=fail).

    Buckets have holes drilled directly below plastic ribs about 3/4 inch from lid. No need for plugs etc. Lid had 3 holes drilled in it for putting directly onto hive top. I just plugged mine up with beeswax.

    I like having one central feeding area to deal with, instead of each individual hive. Only get messy and sticky once at end of inspections that way. Wife doesn't even have to suit up to change out. Done and gone in under 3 minutes and everybody taken care of in one fell swoop.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Ojai, California
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    932

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    I use the 5-quart buckets as they are omnipresent, can find them for free in the dumpsters behind restaurants or hardware stores, etc., and they fit inside a deep box. I make a 3/4" plywood board with a circular hole a half-inch smaller diameter than the lid, centered over the cluster. I drill #60 holes in the lids in rows to line up with the bee-space gaps between the frames. I place the buckets lid-side-down on these boards, and an empty deep brood box with an inner cover and a telescoping cover over them to help conserve heat - these are my robbing season and winter feeders (I get away with Boardman feeders in mild conditions, fondant boards if it freezes).

    Crazylocha - I put ant traps - the Combat blister packs with sugar/water/borax inside inside a wood-frame box with #8 hardware cloth all around it to keep the bees from getting to it. A tent peg holds it down so the bees don't somehow get access to it. The ant trail gets narrower each day for about 5 days, then they are GONE. I just wish I could relocate the ants...I don't like the idea of killing them - they are part of the environment, too, just like the bees and us. Suggestions for trapping ants, anyone?
    Last edited by kilocharlie; 05-12-2013 at 05:03 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Lakeland, FL, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    Anybody use a two gal with the screen? Do the 2 gal buckets leak? That is my main concern

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Spanish Fork, UT, USA
    Posts
    378

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    I use in-hive feeders mainly. A few years ago I tried out some two gal buckets (purchased at Home Depot) with screens I purchased from Mann Lake. I cut a hole in the bucket lid and inserted the screens. I then drilled a small hole in the top of the hive lids and placed the bucket full of syrup upside down on the hive lid, covering the hole. I had very little problems with the buckets leaking. Some of the syrup will pour out the screen when you first turn it over until the airlock in the bucket occurs. The only issue I ran into is some of the hives didn't empty out all the syrup before it started to mold.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
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    2,671

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    We use 2 gallon Paragon pails(Melrose Park Ill.), purchased thru BASCO. They have a lid that will reseal. We drill a hole and heat seal a SS screen from Lapp's, or Extrusion Supply(Waukesha Wis.)

    They are not perfect, but leak less than those with a much of small holes spread over the lid. It helps to have your hives level.

    Crazy Roland

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    FRASER VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA
    Posts
    1,307

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    To answer the question, they mostly do not leak. They can leak when you get hot days cool nights, then the air lock can break. Get proper buckets with screen and a twist on cap so you can refill, without having to completely remove the lid.

    Jean-Marc

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Lakeland, FL, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    Appreciate the info gentlemen.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    souris, manitoba, canada
    Posts
    758

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    We use a 7 kg honey container which holds over a gallon, plastic handles supplied break fast, used to have a metal handle , but don't make em anymore,80 mesh screen and a 1 '' pipe plug

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Tipton, TN, USA
    Posts
    784

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    For the people that cut a hole and heat weld the screen in place. Do you refill through the screen? I tried buckets, but found that the lid would crack over time with repeated openings. Maybe I needed better lids. *shrugs*
    Solo for the last 4 Years, ~60 Hives, TF + Oils.
    http://tradingwebsites4bees.com

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
    Posts
    4,001

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    The wider the holes are spread over the lid the more critical it is that the bucket sits level to keep it from leaking.

    I made mine out of 2 gallon icing buckets from a donut store. The price is right, the size is right, and the functionality is fine - but I don't have much confidence that the !ids will stay on when I flip them. No disasters so far, but I need to replace them with something with a better lid. BTW, I have a few that are made out of 4 gallon size, and that is actually kind of handy - one feeding really does a hive some good.
    Since '09-25H-T-Z6b

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA
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    1,693

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    Quote Originally Posted by Sadler91 View Post
    1 or 2 gal? Screen type feeder hole or plug with holes drilled in it? Currently have one gallons with a plug and some drilled holes. Thinking of switching to some 2 gal. Your thoughts?
    I have used a lot of bucket feeders. I like the 2-gal better, turned over on the inner cover, over the hole. Also have done quite a bit of open feeding, but I prefer 3-gal pails for that. I get all my buckets from the bakery at Albertsons, for $2 apiece.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
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    2,671

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    KevinR - we pickup at 2 gallon Paragon pail in Melrose Park(Chicago). You must deal though a distributor, such as Dee at BASCO. We choose that pail because the lid reseals the best, and so far looks like it will last 20 years. We would rather have a 4 gallon pail made from a softer plastic, but they are special order, 1400 minimum.

    Crazy Roland

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Waupaca, WI USA
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    19

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    Can anyone advise me of the mesh size used when making feeder buckets? I looked at the webite for extrusion supply and see options that might work but don't want to use screen that is too fine or too course. Thanks for the help!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
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    5,967

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    Number 8 hardware cloth is normally used to screen holes in covers to allow bees access to feed buckets, but keep the from moving through that hole. That would be 1/8" holes.

    Mesh size info for beekeepers, courtesy of Michael Bush:
    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    #8 - no bee can pass. pollen gets stuck.
    #7 - as long as there are no bent wires, no bee can pass. Pollen falls through
    #6 - worker bees can squeeze through (and will) but they have to wiggle and squirm a lot. Drones and queens cannot.
    #5 - worker bees can squeeze through easily but lose some of their pollen. Queens and drones cannot.
    #4 - all bees can pass (workers, drones and queens). The workers sometimes lose some of their pollen when they catch their basket on the wire. (mice cannot and this makes a nice mouse guard)
    Last edited by Rader Sidetrack; 12-06-2013 at 04:02 AM. Reason: clarification
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Waupaca, WI USA
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    19

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    Radar, this seems large for the circular screen in the cover of a feeder pail. I am thinking it is something like 20, 40, 100, 150 mesh http://extrusioncontrol.com/extruder...filtration.htm

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
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    2,671

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    Rader, I wish to disagree. The tighter the screen, the less it leaks from angiliZation.

    From Extrusion Control and Supply:

    Part number SCN2.5-40SS
    Desc. 2.5 ' dia, 40 mesh Stainless steel.


    Contact info:
    2325 Parklawn Drive Ste C
    Waukesha , Wis. 53186
    888-327-5201


    The info was free, but i WILL charge you for the best way to weld them to the lids........

    Crazy ROland

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
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    3,876

    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    Do you heat the mesh really hot and use a heated bodymans anvil welded to a handle to push it in?

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
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    Default Re: Feed Buckets

    > Rader, I wish to disagree. The tighter the screen, the less it leaks from angiliZation.

    Roland and Peg -

    Well, re-reading the whole thread, there are two different concepts being talked about in different posts in this thread.. One is to punch holes in a container (see post #3) and set that container over a screened opening in a hive cover. The other concept is to attach screen to a portion of the feed bucket as an alternative to drilling holes.

    I was responding to the idea of screening a hive cover, but I can see that I entirely missed the second concept on initial reading.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Weeki Wachee, Florida,USA
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    1,960

    Default Re: Feed Buckets


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