Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sources - Page 2
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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Paradise, PA, USA
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    3

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sources

    Hi Doc, welcome to the club. I retired in 2017 after 40 years in dairy practice. If you are interested in bees from a veterinary perspective, you might want to check out the Honey Bee Veterinary Consortium. HBVC held a two day meeting last fall with seminars geared to veterinarians interested in bee medicine. I think a similar meeting is planned for this fall.

    https://www.hbvc.org/

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  3. #22
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Location
    Northern Lower Michigan, USA
    Posts
    387

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by Cloverdale View Post
    Greg, why are you saying not to feed the bees? Just curious...
    Cloverdale, I am in Mich. I never feed either. The bees need to tune to the natural blooms, and then they can optimize what is out there and brood up accordingly. In the spring if a hive is low, I would add a super (medium) from a dead out, as spring feed, that would be the only time and it happens like 1 of 10 hives. When I have fed in the past, (from expert advice) they brood up and mites go up and the hive crashes in September, summer looks good dead by the first snow fall. I have been lucky and found Apairy locations near river bottoms. As it drys up the blooms move closer to the water until the very edge of the river has blooms. there are Maples, Dogwood, Willows, Basswood etc along the creeks. I find this is somewhat an ideal Apairy Site. Unfortunately I am not familiar to the Dearth conditions as I do not see them. Similar to the Florida guys not being familiar to 5 feet of snow on the ground. For me if I had to feed, I would move the bees to a better site. If moving is not an option and there is no feed locally then you would be in the same situation of having a horse in the desert, So you would haul in Hay. Having bees I need to feed would take some of the fun out of it for me. I may also have a horse running around a good green pasture, but if I needed to go out and give a bale of hay every day I would likely sell the horse. I need to have the ability to go away for a couple weeks and when I come back , my critters and Bugs are still fine.
    GG

  4. #23
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Sawyer County,WI USA
    Posts
    351

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    We've also never had the 'need' to feed our colonies during summer months and really feel for those Beeks forced to feed during periodic dearths. We have friends in southern GA that are running small open feeders all summer long as a way to tell when a dearth hits. If there's a flow on bees leave the feeder alone, if they're hitting it like mad they feed syrup or add honey to hives.

    It seems that northern regional climates provide a steady flow from about mid April (in northern WI) until goldenrods and asters bloom (mid Sept), then its 6-7 months of survival on what has been collected. If less than required/needed to survive, we will feed primarily honey.

    Depending on its size, while not always successful....We 'try' to leave each 'honey production' colony that will be going into winter around 100 lbs of honey. They earned it, no? Our Nuc's obviously have less storage, but also need less and if they do need some, our big colonies don't seem to miss a few frames.

    Gonna be a HOT weekend, might just watch bees and wait till the next cool morning to get into the yard.

    Stay cool/Take care friends!

  5. #24
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Dane County, WI, USA
    Posts
    2,208

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by Gray Goose View Post
    ....... If moving is not an option and there is no feed locally then you would be in the same situation of having a horse in the desert.......GG
    OR similar to growing alfalfa in the desert (by pumping the water from aquifer down below until it is all gone).
    Google up how the Saudis doing it in California and laughing all way to the bank (to the detriment of the locals - who sold the land to the Saudis - scratching there heads - why are the wells going dry????).

    In short - this is unsustainable and (... I will stop right here...).

    You must understand what your local honey bee foraging base is and decide accordingly (to keep the bees OR not to keep the bees).
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame experimentation.

  6. #25
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Dane County, WI, USA
    Posts
    2,208

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by drummerboy View Post
    We've also never had the 'need' to feed our colonies during summer months.....

    Stay cool/Take care friends!
    Right, DB.
    Basically, we up here get compensated for the 6-7 months of solid no-forage, cold-season time by then 5-6 months of non-stop foraging, warm-season time (weather permitting) - there is always something coming in (at least some small sustaining nectar/pollen flow).

    The only valid cases of summer feeding here - very weak nucs that are worth keeping.
    I feed one right now - just dropped in a frame of old honey/pollen for them to scavenge through.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame experimentation.

  7. #26
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Northeast PA
    Posts
    78

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by drummerboy View Post
    We've also never had the 'need' to feed our colonies during summer months and really feel for those Beeks forced to feed during periodic dearths. We have friends in southern GA that are running small open feeders all summer long as a way to tell when a dearth hits. If there's a flow on bees leave the feeder alone, if they're hitting it like mad they feed syrup or add honey to hives.

    It seems that northern regional climates provide a steady flow from about mid April (in northern WI) until goldenrods and asters bloom (mid Sept), then its 6-7 months of survival on what has been collected. If less than required/needed to survive, we will feed primarily honey.

    Depending on its size, while not always successful....We 'try' to leave each 'honey production' colony that will be going into winter around 100 lbs of honey. They earned it, no? Our Nuc's obviously have less storage, but also need less and if they do need some, our big colonies don't seem to miss a few frames.

    Gonna be a HOT weekend, might just watch bees and wait till the next cool morning to get into the yard.

    Stay cool/Take care friends!
    How many frames of capped honey is 100 lbs?

  8. #27
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aylett, Virginia
    Posts
    3,260

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by username00101 View Post
    How many frames of capped honey is 100 lbs?
    100# would be about 14-15 deep lang frames. You did not specify the size or style of the frame, but asked a question which can not be answered without that information. If you have Dadant deeps, maybe what, six frames? Shallow supers, 30 frames?
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  9. #28
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Location
    Dundas, ON, Canada
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by username00101 View Post
    How many frames of capped honey is 100 lbs?
    Based on my extraction last week that would be exactly 2 deeps fully packed with honey. Seems like overkill - here in the frozen Canada we overwinter with a fraction of that amount. One year when I tried leaving them 2 doubles full of honey they did not consume even half of that...

  10. #29
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Location
    Northern Lower Michigan, USA
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    387

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by dekster View Post
    Based on my extraction last week that would be exactly 2 deeps fully packed with honey. Seems like overkill - here in the frozen Canada we overwinter with a fraction of that amount. One year when I tried leaving them 2 doubles full of honey they did not consume even half of that...
    Seems a deep is more than 50 pounds of honey. Dundas is not really the frozen north, it is near Hamilton, like even with Flint Mich. I am about 4 hours drive north of you in Pleasant Thunder Bay River Valley. I guess down south in Dundas 40-60 pounds may be enough to winter. I shoot for 70-90 pounds of stores, in Northern lower Michigan, somewhat dependent on the population, Smaller clusters need a bit less larger a Bit more. GregV uses the Layens style frames so 6 to 8 frames would be close to 100 pounds, again dependant on comb thickness. Also in spring you may need 3 or so more weeks of feed to get to blooms, Dandelion bloom is when i breath the sign of relief. each local is somewhat unique. So dekster you extract in mid july? Is this it then or do you do another later? I do one in late Aug, then let them pack in some goldenrod honey.
    GG

  11. #30
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Dane County, WI, USA
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    2,208

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by JWPalmer View Post
    100# would be about 14-15 deep lang frames. You did not specify the size or style of the frame, but asked a question which can not be answered without that information. If you have Dadant deeps, maybe what, six frames? Shallow supers, 30 frames?
    Standard Dadant deep frame (435x300 mm) completely full of honey holds ~10 pounds (~4kg).

    Eastern Euro beeks normally winter on 6-8 Dadant deep frames - that is ~50-80 lbs (brood-nest frames for wintering are hardly ever 100% full, more like 80% full).
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame experimentation.

  12. #31
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Dane County, WI, USA
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    2,208

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by Gray Goose View Post
    .... GregV uses the Layens style frames so 6 to 8 frames would be close to 100 pounds......GG
    Closer to 50-80 pounds (case by case).
    I am essentially identical to the Dadant frames.

    Case by case, I will put up dry sugar (especially late winter - every surviving unit will get dry sugar then - because it is worth it at that point).
    This is a great cheap insurance and has always paid off for me (even when honey is still available, sugar often more desirable/reachable during cold season - so it is not just about honey availability but about honey usability).
    Last edited by GregV; 07-18-2019 at 01:43 PM.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame experimentation.

  13. #32
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Location
    Dundas, ON, Canada
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Retired veterinarian bees have no nectar sourcears

    Quote Originally Posted by Gray Goose View Post
    Smaller clusters need a bit less larger a Bit more. So dekster you extract in mid july? Is this it then or do you do another later? I do one in late Aug, then let them pack in some goldenrod honey.
    GG
    Good point- I'm trying to keep smaller clusters now (single brood deeps year round only as per Paul Kelly), so they not only need less stores but generally have better survival rates (from my very limited experience so far).
    I have to extract in July and then again in Aug otherwise I won't be able to put the third double super on top (drawback of running all deeps). I can't leave them the goldenrod honey in the fall since I reduce them to single box, so they get whatever honey they stashed away in the brood box plus all the sugar syrup they can absorb.

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