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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My hives are right next to water in a stream that runs kinda lazy. Their are some things in the water the bee's could get on to drink. But today I have been watching them discover the water in the any trap on the humming bird feeder. Their are a lot bee's drinking and I'm just wondering even though they are next to water should I put it in something that would be easier for them to drink from?


Greg
 

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My hives are right next to water in a stream that runs kinda lazy. Their are some things in the water the bee's could get on to drink. But today I have been watching them discover the water in the any trap on the humming bird feeder. Their are a lot bee's drinking and I'm just wondering even though they are next to water should I put it in something that would be easier for them to drink from?


Yes, if you have suggestions on watering, I would love to hear them. Two of my neighbors, one with a pool and another with a birdbath, have complained about my bees...I put a couple of pans of water with landing strips in them out there, but they seem to ignore it.
Dave
 

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I was reading somewhere how there was a water issue and the beekeeper took a boardman feeder they never use, put one drop of bleach in, then filled it with water and inserted it into the front of the hive.
 

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I use a 7-gallon poultry waterer about 30 ft from the hive. I put rocks in the water pan so they have something to land on.

I'm about to try a little experiment this weekend, and break off a few small pieces from a cattle mineral block to put in the water supply. Bees supposedly love a little mineral content in the water. We had a long discussion with a fellow who was having bee problems at his salt water pool a month or two back ... evidently they just adore salt water.

I have used Ant Can'ts on hummingbird feeders before. The recommendation was to put soapy water in them, which, of course, would kill bees. Ever since I learned the Charlie B. trick of inverted cups with grease in them, I've used my Ant Can'ts inverted and greased.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I use a 7-gallon poultry waterer about 30 ft from the hive. I put rocks in the water pan so they have something to land on.

I'm about to try a little experiment this weekend, and break off a few small pieces from a cattle mineral block to put in the water supply. Bees supposedly love a little mineral content in the water. We had a long discussion with a fellow who was having bee problems at his salt water pool a month or two back ... evidently they just adore salt water.

I have used Ant Can'ts on hummingbird feeders before. The recommendation was to put soapy water in them, which, of course, would kill bees. Ever since I learned the Charlie B. trick of inverted cups with grease in them, I've used my Ant Can'ts inverted and greased.
Thanks for the tip on the humming bird feeders. My ant traps are homemade and work great. I really don't care if the bee's drink the water out of them. Its just got me thinking I might be able to do better at watering them when I saw them at the feeder in force.

Greg
 

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Put some lemongrass oil in the water and watch them get on it in just a day or so.

Not in the creek...I use a 5gallon bucket upside down.
 

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I also use a poultry waterer ... whose trough is completely filled-up with river-rocks and large gravel stones, since bees cannot swim! The waterer is simply sitting on top of one of my top-bar hives, perched on top of a couple of bricks to allow air-circulation beneath it. (Keeps it dry under there.)

Filling 'em up is easy. Just carry a half-bucket of water up there, scoop all the stones from the trough into the bucket, fill up the feeder with more water, then replace the stones. (There should be no significant "pools" of water that are not filled-up with stones, in which an insect could drown.)

The stones, of course, also greatly reduce evaporation. My hives sit in a grove of hardwood trees in the middle of a pasture. I fill the waterer about once a week.
 

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I have heard bees are loyal to a water source. I've read to get bees to drink from another source, use a light sugar syrup the first time and they will come to it from then on.
 

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As you can see in the first picture, when I started out my water sources were 2x3' plastic tubs with rocks in them so the bees had something to land on. The bees loved it. But about 3 bees per day drowned. So I thought I'd try birdbath tops (2nd picture) because the edges are sloped unlike the 90 degree edges of the plastic tubs. Plus the concrete can stay out during the winter whereas the plastic would break once the water freezes. But the bees will not land on the new birdbaths (with or without rocks in it) and I don't know why. I've tried letting one of the two get funky while keeping the other cleaned weekly. Nada. I'm bummed. I guess I'll have to go back to the plastic tubs with rocks in them even though that's not sustainable.
photo (2).jpg photo (3).jpg
 

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I've found that 'my' bees like my bird bath probably more than any other water source. They especially like it if I don't clean it out. I only pressure wash it about once a month now and have noticed that they seem to go elsewhere for about a week, till it get 'dirty' again. Don't know why this is - but that's what they do. It doesn't matter whether I'm running the pump or not - but do run the pump all the time to try and keep the mosquito population down.
 

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I have a small "pond" i put water hyacinth in,it grows like mad and gives the girls a landing/rescue points,there are goldfish in it also which do a number on skeeters,also a two gallon poultry feeder with small river rocks that sits behind my hives ( i have a brick sized mineral block sitting on that)that seems skeeter free also,but the funny thing is..i have three peat pot seed starter kits i was growing borage in and the girls love those things,they are always busy,,go figure they like the muddy water best
 

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I have two plastic buckets out with the wood and two old crock pots and they love the crock pots more than the plastic (but I only have this picture)
 

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I have two plastic buckets out with the wood and two old crock pots and they love the crock pots more than the plastic (but I only have this picture)
How do you keep the mosquito larvae from taking over?
 

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I have an old concrete planter I filled with large rocks and water. To help prevent making a mosquito breeding ground I found a small solar powered fountain pump at harbor freight.
 

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I use 3 bird baths set on the ground with rocks and gravel. When they get near empty I pour water from a bucket and fill them. I normally don't clean them as i am always adding a fresh water supple by pouring in new water and allowing it to overflow. has been working great for years. My bird baths are actually large shallow plastic pans from the center of former bird baths.Cheap and effective.
 
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