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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been feeding 2 hives sugar water made up of 2 water to 1 sugar. Each hive is 2 hives bodies with a lot of honey stored. They go through 1 quart a day and have been for about a month. Water is available about 15 feet away. The dirth is here or close to it. I checked one hive this morning that I had split on June 19 and finally saw larve, so they made a queen. They were not happy so din't go much futher than that. I was just happy to see babies ( my luck I'll have a drone layer). Is it time to go to a 1 to 1 on sugar water. Weather is no wind and 103 degrees. Thanks as always. Wes
 

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What are you hoping to accomplish with your feeding?

The two parts water to one part sugar is unusually light on sugar - most folks feed 1:1 to simulate a nectar flow and encourage the bees to draw out foundation and the queen to lay.

You'll switch to the heavier syrup (2 parts sugar, 1 part water) if in advance of winter the hive is light and needs to store additional food resources. I subscribe to the theory that it is better to feed them in September than in January.

But you should have a purpose for your feeding. A fully populated healthy hive in an area with sufficient resources should not need feeding. Feeding a newly installed split/package/nuc is another matter...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I am just trying to increase my population in the split. I put a lot of honey in the hive when I did the split. I have been told as long as they will take it, keep feeding. I THINK I am trying to keep robbing from taking place by feeding the other hive. But is it time to up the sugar content? Thanks
 

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You've had some responses from the South including Texas with different attitudes toward feeding. In general for my colonies I try to get them off the syrup band wagon after their first year. Any honey they may put by in the colony while I am feeding them the first year I leave for them. The second year and beyond I plan to harvest surplus honey from the colony and I don't want "honey" made from sugar syrup - certainly not to sell.

I can't advise you on a specific date to start feeding 2:1. When you make the switch depends on what flows have yet to happen in your area and when the bees usually shut down for the winter. I try to start my fall feeding 4-6 weeks before they shut down (meaning when they stop foraging and processing incoming nectar.) Once the hive is at its appropriate weight for winter I stop feeding.

HTH

Andrew
 

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Well, to ask a couple of beekeepers and get three answers, I always feed 2:1 (two sugar to one water). I did feed 1:1 for a couple of years, but didn't really see that they built up any differently with it, so now I use 2:1. It is just more bang for the time spent feeding. If I run out of sugar and need to feed more hives than I have sugar for, I will thin it, but normally just feed heavy syrup now.

I have probably never fed a hive more than about 4 gallons in a year (including packages), so my management style may not suit everyone.
 
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