Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a standard boardman feeder on the hive I just built. My bees arrive in May. Should I install a top feeder in the hive to ensure they are getting enough food and so I don't have to refill the boardman feeder jar every day (or every few days...I don't know how fast they will go thru it)?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,548 Posts
Hey Cat,
Well you can do what you want, but i followed USCBEE mans advice and made a circle(out of plywood) that fit the inside of a 5 gallon bucket. Drilled holes through it and covered it in screen, then filled the bucket up with 1 to 1 or 2 to 1 and dropped the circle back down in it. This way you dont have to feed them all that much. Just move it away fromt he hive. Mine stays about 100 feet from my hive(lessens robbing if there are other bees near by). IMHO, it also gets them out of the hive and helps them keep that foraging instinct. Good luck....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
502 Posts
Hi catdance, first of all welcome to this great hobby and much good fortune. If you read on this forum on feeders, the Boardmanfeeder has the reputation of encouraging robbing. I have some modificatons on my hives with the inner cover, but I would recommend to start with a couple of quart jars sitting over the oval hole of the inner cover on some sticks. I use some triangular wood strips. The jar lids need small holes, I drill them with a 1/16" drill, others use a nail to punch them in. The syrup will not run out onto the bees as it operates similar to a glass water cooler. Over the glass jars I would set a super and then put the outer cover back on. When I change the jars after they have been feeding, I brush the few off that are still hanging on and then place the fresh full jars upside down over the hole. Do they feed fast? That depends on the individual hive. I had one hive that would not touch it and the others went through two quarts in a day easily. So it will be a whole new experience for you and I suggest you get another hive soon so you will be able to compare them. Take care and have fun
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
6,176 Posts
I would encourage a different feeder if for nothing else than to have a choice and learn about how different tools work for you. A top feeder does typically hold more than a boardman feeder but has the disadvantage of being a little unwieldy when full and not as easy to see if it needs more syrup (at least compared to a clear jar). Right now, I use gallon paint buckets with holes drilled in the lids. I invert those over a couple of sticks right over the hole in the top cover. They're easy to fill back at the barn. I pour syrup in them from a large container and tap the cover closed. If they're not going right out to the hives, I apply a piece of shipping tape over the holes. If I've treated the syrup, I wrap a small piece of tape around the handle...like electrical tape...to remind me which can has treated syrup and which doesn't. When I visit the hives, I replace the can no matter what. That way, I can add fresh syrup...note that a hive hasn't taken syrup for whatever reason......or clear the holes in the can if the bees blocked them up for whatever reason (like the can runs dry and they start to build some comb). The handles of the paint cans make them easy to carry. If I need more than one can on a hive, I just add another set of sticks on the inner cover. The bees will find it just fine. I enclose the cans with old deeps and put the outer lid on as usual.

Hope this helps!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
thanks for all the advice. I will probably go with the paint can method or the bucket method.
I really appreciate the fast responses!
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top