Sugar Syrup Question
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Fultonville,New York,USA
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    683

    Default Sugar Syrup Question

    I am feeding one of my hives sugar syrup. Its in a boardman feeder on top of the brood box covered by a empty deep. They are not sucking it down that fast. How long would it be good in there? Its been dry mid 80's.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Lexington, VA, USA
    Posts
    465

    Default Re: Sugar Syrup Question

    Put in a 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar to extend the life.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    7,786

    Default Re: Sugar Syrup Question

    The bees should empty that quart in a few days if no flow is available. It should be gone before it ferments. I would caution you that feeding in a slow trickle like that results in the bees raising more brood than may be warranted and mlght not result in the hive getting any stored ahead for winter.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Fultonville,New York,USA
    Posts
    683

    Default Re: Sugar Syrup Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Vance G View Post
    The bees should empty that quart in a few days if no flow is available. It should be gone before it ferments. I would caution you that feeding in a slow trickle like that results in the bees raising more brood than may be warranted and mlght not result in the hive getting any stored ahead for winter.
    I have plenty of honey to give them for winter. Just seem to be drawing comb slowly. Wanted to get the brood chamber fully drawn.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Baldwin, Wisconsin
    Posts
    71

    Default Re: Sugar Syrup Question

    If you want the bees to pull comb then you need to feed at a rapid rate rather than a slow rate. You just don't want to feed so much that they backfill and stop the queen from having open space to lay eggs in.
    I also add 1/4 teaspoon household bleach per each gallon of 1:1 or even 2:1 syrup and I also add the apple cider vinegar. The bleach will make it smell like a swimming pool but the syrup won't spoil and the bees don't mind it.
    You probably also need to move the combs around a little bit, the undrawn or not-fully drawn frames interspersed between the fully-drawn ones with brood.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Verde Valley Arizona
    Posts
    51

    Default Re: Sugar Syrup Question

    My recipe is 1:1 sugar syrup with 1 tsp. cider vinegar and 5 drops of lemon and eucalyptus oil per gallon. The bees will suck down a 1/2 gallon in two days.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Fultonville,New York,USA
    Posts
    683

    Default Re: Sugar Syrup Question

    Quote Originally Posted by johnsof View Post
    If you want the bees to pull comb then you need to feed at a rapid rate rather than a slow rate. You just don't want to feed so much that they backfill and stop the queen from having open space to lay eggs in.
    I also add 1/4 teaspoon household bleach per each gallon of 1:1 or even 2:1 syrup and I also add the apple cider vinegar. The bleach will make it smell like a swimming pool but the syrup won't spoil and the bees don't mind it.
    You probably also need to move the combs around a little bit, the undrawn or not-fully drawn frames interspersed between the fully-drawn ones with brood.
    OK so how do I get them to take it quicker? I've been giving it to them in a boardman feeder and mason jar. Took them about 3 days to eat it. I also have a deep frame of honey in there for them to eat. There's probably enough bees to cover 4 or 5 frames

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Jospehine County, Oregon
    Posts
    261

    Default Re: Sugar Syrup Question

    each colony is different, I have several that will not touch syrup and a few that are finicky with it, and the rest suck a gallon in 1-2 days.
    then look at how each hive is performing production wise, i honey, brood eggs etc...the ones I have that don't take syrup are huge monster colonies.
    and in the last 2 season never shut down fully during the winter here in southern oregon like every oother hive.
    Those bees came from the deserts of the Navajo Rez of N.AZ and make lots of honey, not aggressive at all.
    Their daughters and granddaughters are now a mix of caucasians and the locals,
    Caucasian's are all I work here in my apiary. The Caucasians are from OldSol here in the Rogue.
    The Navajo Bees were a cutout I did one summer visiting Alfred Yazzie , a silversmith.
    another story that's real cool.
    Being 70 somthin I love Caucasian Bees you can work them nude if so desired.
    lots of factors to consider when assessing feeding etc imo.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Winona MN USA
    Posts
    252

    Default Re: Sugar Syrup Question

    What I did not see is how much brood was in your hive, sealed or otherwise. That to me would tell me more about how I want to feed. As I understand it, younger bees produce most of the wax. That may not be entirely true but close enough. That being said, 4 or 5 frames is not a lot of bees. They only have so much ability to build. Feeding does encourage comb building, but it also bring on backfilling. Not being able to see how much brood and space to lay you already have, it is hard to say how much to feed. If it was me, I think the rate they are currently taking it is not bad. I am however thinking you still have some sort of flow going on. I worry more about backfilling what comb you have, leaving no room for your queen to lay. I would be trying to build the hive strength, as that can build more comb with more aggress of feeding. There is no exact answer to your issue as there are different conditions that are specific to your hive and location. That's my opinion, and just that, my opinion. I have a bigger problem with backfilling a small hive than drawing comb. It can be a delicate balance some times. I know that this was not exactly your question but I think it is something to consider since your bees seem to be taking all they want.
    GOOD LUCK!!!

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Fultonville,New York,USA
    Posts
    683

    Default Re: Sugar Syrup Question

    Very good post beehaven. Lot of flowers blooming and a lot of rain. I had a bad cross comb issue I had to fix and that probably set them back a little. About a week and a halph ago I gave them a old frame of brood and they started storing nectar on the one side and watched the queen laying eggs on the other side. Do not know a lot about bees but now that I think about it probably a sign to not feed. Maybe I am wrong. Thanks

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