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When hiving (my first) package, when should I start feeding pollen/supplement? I'll have syrup on in a miller hivetop from get-go, but since the pollen as I understand it is for brood rearing, when'll they have comb enough for her highness to start laying and thus need feed?

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>> when'll they have comb enough for her highness to start laying and thus need feed?

My prediction is . . . before the queen gets released.
 

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By the time you are hiving packages there will be real pollen available. They probably won't use any substitute anyway, if you DID give it to them.

I would feed them syrup from day one. I wouldn't bother with the pollen. I was feeding REAL pollen and my bees were tearing it up in February. They won't hardly touch it now that there is FRESH pollen on the trees.
 

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So feeding pollen's more for pre-bloom buildup in late winter? Would one use it late-season, say to promote health in winter brood, or do you just check to see how much they've laid aside?
 

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Ben Brewcat;
I always over winter my hives with a pollen pattie on top of bee cluster to promote winter brood.

The Hive and the Honeybee Chapter 6, starting on page 197 is essential reading.

Terry
 

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I haven't done as Antero has, but the hives with more pollen stored usually seem to come into spring better, so it makes sense. But my bees seem to waste a lot of pollen when I give them patties. When they want it, they will take anything you give them but when they aren't interested they haul it out with the trash. Maybe I'll try a pollen pattie overwinter sometime. I've only done them in the late winter.
 

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I normally see hives in my area start raising winter bees approx. end of Sept. into Oct. I started giving them a one pound protein pollen pattie during this time to make sure that I go into the winter with a good cluster of winter bees. Just seems to give them an added boast at this time of year.
Frank Wyatt
WG Bee
 

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Last year I was putting swarms on a frame of brood from a donor hive along with a Bee-Pro pattie, and a miller feeder of 1-1 syrup. They would fill two mediums of PC with bees in nothing flat. Those early swarms actully gave me some surplus honey.
 
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