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I have some beehives that are very low on honey this winter. Is it important to feed them some sort of pollen/protein, or is straight white sugar enough?
 

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All I do in this situation is feed plain white sugar in some form - fondant preferred - or damp-set crystallised table sugar if fondant's not available.

Feeding pollen or pollen substitute may stimulate colonies into early brood-rearing, and if they're seriously low on stores then that's not such a good idea ...
Good luck
LJ
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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You are two weeks post winter solstice. The queen typically starts producing at this time. I would place a winter patty on the hives in addition to the sugar. A winter patty is mostly sugar but has some protein in it, enough hopefully for the new brood to be fed. Rusty Burlew of www.honeybeesuite.com recommends pollen sub anytime after winter solstice. If you do feed pollen sub, make sure they have plenty of sugar too.
 
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