Dry sugar feeding - who invented?
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  1. #1
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    Default Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Well, the dry sugar/candy feeding turns out to be a just another "bicycle wheel" (forgotten and reinvented).

    Here is a proof.
    1917 book about log hive beekeeping, printed in Petrograd (now St. Petersburg) of Russia, pages 85-85.
    Talks about dry sugar feeding in winter as if something rather routine.
    There are comments how the dry sugar/candy pieces must be served from above and immediately close to the cluster as bees are not mobile in winter.
    DrySugarFeeding1917.jpg

    Source: https://naturalbeekeeping.ru/lib/Kol...dstvo_1917.pdf

    PS:
    it is shame that I had to comment about dry sugar feeding on some of the Russian Youtube channels - they had no idea;
    they really have no idea of dry sugar feeding in very general sense;
    when I referenced to "mountain camp" feeding style - within days I saw videos of how the "Americans in mountain camps feed the bees this way";

    People just don't read their own heritage literature; really a shame.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Do you think this is a Russian thing, or in beekeeping everywhere? J

  4. #3
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fivej View Post
    Do you think this is a Russian thing, or in beekeeping everywhere? J
    I have no idea.
    Probably general issue everywhere.

    My Dad always had terrible time trying to feed bees the sugar syrup in winter (in shed) - did not work very well.
    He did not know in 1960s-1970s of trivially using dry sugar for emergency winter feeding.
    They in Russia and Eastern Euro are largely unaware of dry sugar feeding.

    Somehow they lost this general knowledge along the way (partially because it was declared that the old ways and ideas were bad and to be thrown away).

    I always thought a guy nicknamed "Mountain Camp" came up with this dry sugar feeding thing.
    Then read this 1917 book and what do I see?
    Dry sugar feeding.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  5. #4
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Supposedly there was a fellow that had the handle mountain camp here on beesourse was the one that first mentioned using the method.
    Rod

  6. #5
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    I've been reading here long enough to have seen Mountain Camp's original post, although I can no longer find it. I believe that Mountain Camp has since gone to that great beeyard in the sky.
    Bill

  7. #6
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    I often read in modern Russian books about pieces of sugar during the wintering as forage, and the matter, as I understand it, is sugar in sand form. The book talks about lumpy sugar, which is exactly what was used at that time.
    "It is best of all to give bees food in the winter in the absence of honey in a solid form, namely, in the form of sugar in pieces, candy or forage.
    At the same time, it is necessary that the feeding given should be as close as possible to the club of bees, since it is not easy for bees to separate from the general club during wintering, but having separated, they can easily die as well. Therefore, it is best to give food from above, giving it through the hole in the top so that the food will be at the very club of the bees".

  8. #7
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by whiskers View Post
    I've been reading here long enough to have seen Mountain Camp's original post, although I can no longer find it. I believe that Mountain Camp has since gone to that great beeyard in the sky.
    Bill
    I remember MC, too. Had plenty of "discussions" with him. His original premise was to use the sugar as an absorbent to deal with moisture issues in the wintering hive. But, the moisture issue was created by him feeding syrup too late in the season. In the Catskills of NY, he fed syrup until Thanksgiving and then had to use an absorbent to address the moisture issue. Claims to add 5 lb. of sugar...6 times during the winter. That management would have me dragging 21,000 lb. sugar to my apiaries, on snowshoes and toboggan.

  9. #8
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Here are some early threads with Mountain Camp posts regarding newspaper and sugar on the top bars:

    https://www.beesource.com/forums/sho...ugar#post26161
    https://www.beesource.com/forums/sho...ugar#post31505
    https://www.beesource.com/forums/sho...ugar#post47358
    https://www.beesource.com/forums/sho...ugar#post47358
    https://www.beesource.com/forums/sho...gar#post128199
    https://www.beesource.com/forums/sho...gar#post134178

    Those are starting in 2003 listed in ascending date sequence. As you can see, "Daisy" initiated the first thread, and Mountain Camp responded.


    Perhaps, if things worked out differently, today we would be referring to it today as Daisy Sugar feeding.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  10. #9
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    I remember MC, too. Had plenty of "discussions" with him. His original premise was to use the sugar as an absorbent to deal with moisture issues in the wintering hive...
    Haha.
    So, as suspected, the dry sugar feed was unknown or forgotten in the North America too.
    Sounds as if MC accidentally re-discovered it.
    Last edited by GregV; 12-21-2018 at 08:44 AM.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  11. #10
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by sesk View Post
    I often read in modern Russian books about pieces of sugar during the wintering as forage, and the matter, as I understand it, is sugar in sand form. The book talks about lumpy sugar, which is exactly what was used at that time.
    "It is best of all to give bees food in the winter in the absence of honey in a solid form, namely, in the form of sugar in pieces, candy or forage.
    At the same time, it is necessary that the feeding given should be as close as possible to the club of bees, since it is not easy for bees to separate from the general club during wintering, but having separated, they can easily die as well. Therefore, it is best to give food from above, giving it through the hole in the top so that the food will be at the very club of the bees".
    Yes, the book talks about lumps of dry sugar to use.
    This is consistent with the MC method (as the loose sugar will turn into a lump anyway, due to moisture).
    One also can re-use existing lumps as well.
    This year, I am reusing some of the lumpy sugar left over from the last year.
    Like so:
    20181216_132759.jpg

    Like I said, I recently brought it up on one popular Youtube channel by an experienced beekeeper
    (this channel: https://www.youtube.com/results?sear...B5%D0%BA%D0%B0)

    The channel operator had no idea of dry sugar feeding when I described it as done in the US.
    There were other comments indicating the same - not being aware of the method.
    Within days, I saw the dry sugar feeding coming up on other Russian-speaking Youtube channels as if "originating in North America".
    Of course, no mention of my name as their source - all too typical for modern copycat content generators.

    I lost some respect for some channels (otherwise, useful and informative channels).
    Not saying I invented anything, I just brought the dry sugar method to their attention.
    They should be pointing to the sources of their information.
    Last edited by GregV; 12-21-2018 at 09:01 AM.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  12. #11
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by GregV View Post
    They should be pointing to the sources of their information.
    They're just not naming their source for their own reasons.
    ks

  13. #12
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chicago_ks View Post
    They're just not naming their source for their own reasons.
    ks
    Of course!

    But maybe I should comment on their channels and point them to the 1917 book as the actual oldest, documented source (not some "Americans in mountain camps", hahaha).
    Still thinking about it.

    PS: who actually deserves the credit - some unknown person who spent the time digitizing the old printed content - now, that is some worthy effort.
    I need to try and find those people and thank them.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  14. #13
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    When I was first learning serious beekeeping in the early seventies, one of my commercial 'teachers' talked about emergency feeding in the winter in Texas by tilting a hive backward and pouring in dry sugar so the bees would have a food source. So this idea in various forms has been around fifty years I personally know about.

  15. #14

    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    I remember MC, too. Had plenty of "discussions" with him. His original premise was to use the sugar as an absorbent to deal with moisture issues in the wintering hive. But, the moisture issue was created by him feeding syrup too late in the season. In the Catskills of NY, he fed syrup until Thanksgiving and then had to use an absorbent to address the moisture issue. Claims to add 5 lb. of sugar...6 times during the winter. That management would have me dragging 21,000 lb. sugar to my apiaries, on snowshoes and toboggan.
    You would have calf muscles like Popeye.
    One of my friends whom was a commercial beek from the 70’s- 90’s said that they used to dump sugar right into the hives if necessary. His logic was that if they are hungry enough, they will find it.

  16. #15
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by GregV View Post
    Haha.
    So, as suspected, the dry sugar feed was unknown or forgotten in the North America too.
    Sounds as if MC accidentally re-discovered it.
    Nah. I knew beekeepers in northern New York who used sugar around the inner cover hole in the 50s and 60s...as an emergency winter feeding method. And surely they got it from someone who used the method before that.

  17. #16
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    Default

    Ideas get reused, repurposed, renamed and rediscovered all the time.
    Mistakes are the best taechers

  18. #17
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    ...And surely they got it from someone who used the method before that.
    Might be S.Simmins with his book "A Modern Bee Farm" published in1887. This book suggested putting on top of frames coarse canvas bags filled with 10 lbs. of dry white, not brown, sugar after the bees had stocked up on syrup.

  19. #18
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Only been at this for a few years but I had a picture in my head that "Mountain Camp" was the name given to dry sugar feeding by a old guy in Montana with a beard down to his belly. J

  20. #19
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fivej View Post
    Only been at this for a few years but I had a picture in my head that "Mountain Camp" was the name given to dry sugar feeding by a old guy in Montana with a beard down to his belly. J

  21. #20
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    Default Re: Dry sugar feeding - who invented?

    Started beekeeping in 1964 and was using dry sugar as a supplement for winter feed then. Surely, it was well known way before then. OMTCW

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