Empty frames - Is feeding a viable option?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Cedar Rapids, Iowa ISA
    Posts
    18

    Default Empty frames - Is feeding a viable option?

    Hello, a first-year beekeepers from with a question. We have three hives, two ten frames and one six-frame Nuc from a July split. Yesterday while transferring the Nuc Frames to new boxes we found all the frames to be light or low in stored reserves. Over the past four weeks, they seem to have exhausted stores. It's been dry, hot, and no fall flow. The population appears strong with heavy capped brood. My question is can we feed (heavily) to overcome the low to non-existing honey stores to get them through the winter? I placed a super of extra drawn dry frames in hopes they would fill and started feeding with 2:1 sugar water. We are Eastern Iowa, Zone 5A.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Bradley County, Tennessee
    Posts
    39

    Default Re: Empty frames - Is feeding a viable option?

    Hi Hawk,
    I have the same problem. A month or so ago, they had more honey stored than they knew what to do with, all of a sudden, it's gone! For the last week or two, I've been giving them as much 2:1 as they will take, and they've been taking a lot. Robbing is not the problem, as I have been closely monitoring them for any intrusion. I have 2 hives and they both are in the same predicament. I'll check them in a week or two to see how it's going. Like you, I'm a first year Beek.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Manning, SC
    Posts
    5,197

    Default Re: Empty frames - Is feeding a viable option?

    Feed, feed and feed some more!
    http://OxaVap.com Your source for the ProVap 110
    OA Vaporizer. The fastest vaporizer on the market!

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Location
    frederick, md
    Posts
    832

    Default Re: Empty frames - Is feeding a viable option?

    We have been feeding lightly since July, now stepping it up, they all had capped honey, all became light, now starting to store for winter.
    We are putting 1-2 gallons of 2/1 on the hives with each feeding, using hive top feeders. They are empty within a few days. So far no back filling of the brood nest.
    Zone 6b: 27 hives in Maryland, Carniolan, Italian mix mutts: Still learning - started bees spring of 2014.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Rensselaer County, NY, USA
    Posts
    5,534

    Default Re: Empty frames - Is feeding a viable option?

    You can feed syrup into already-drawn frames, but they will not likely draw out much new comb for storage at this time of year in the north.

    Nancy

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Cedar Rapids, Iowa ISA
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Empty frames - Is feeding a viable option?

    We have drawn comb and will continue to feed. Will the bee’s covert the 2:1 sugar to honey, cap, or simply fill the comb? Thank you for the feedback

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Maysel,WV
    Posts
    73

    Default Re: Empty frames - Is feeding a viable option?

    I have lost three hive to starvation since our death supposedly ended and the fall flow started. I left minimum of one supper of honey on everything plus whatever wasn’t full capped......all gone even in the hives not dead. Been feeding heavily for a few weeks now trying to get ahead of the curve again. Took three gal of syrup to each hive just to start turning them around get them to begin filling up comb again hopefully another 3gal will get them back to weight. Then more sugar in the form of candy boards for winter.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Dayton, OH USA
    Posts
    328

    Default Re: Empty frames - Is feeding a viable option?

    Quote Originally Posted by hawkeyeegghead View Post
    We have drawn comb and will continue to feed. Will the bee’s covert the 2:1 sugar to honey, cap, or simply fill the comb? Thank you for the feedback
    They will never convert sugar water to honey. Only nectar can be converted to honey. They will fill the cells with the sugar water and dry it down, then cap it.

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