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Newbeek questions:

I read about pollen patties and have some questions. I am curious as to how many use them.
And if they do, use them, a few follow up questions:

1) When do most folks use them?
2) How are they used? Just put out on top of frames, it seems.
3) Is this a supplement or something used only during a dearth? Should they be placed out all the time, or in Fall? Is this a seasonal thing?
4)Where do folks store their unused pollen patties? Fridge? Dry storage? How long can you store it?

Thanks!
 

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Limited experience here (2nd year) but others with more do things the same way

1) I use them when the need for protein isn't likely to be met by foraging. For an established colony that means starting in early Fall, to help build a strong population for overwintering, and early Spring to help build brood. Hive beetles can be a problem in the summer, but I would use them in small amounts if a hive seems to need a boost.
2) I just put them on top of the top bars.
3) It is a supplement, but increasingly folk use them as part of their routine management plan, to try to ensure a lot of 'fat' bees are in the hive going into winter.
4) I make my own from dry powder, cut it into small chunks like fudge, and store them in the fridge. They seem to keep well, but become less attractive to bees after a few months.
 

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I have be using joe Latshaw mix. That I have been mixing up. I have been adding it to a hive as they eat it. Having a good brood pattern so far. Nuc have been going though a dollop once a week.
David
 

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>1) When do most folks use them?

Actually I use real pollen and open feed it, but only in a failed fall flow. A good indicator is when I see the bees working the chicken feed dust or the coffee grounds in the fall.

> 2) How are they used? Just put out on top of frames, it seems.

I put pollen in an empty hive on window screen over a SBB over a solid bottom. The window screen keeps it from falling through the #8 SBB. The screened bottom keeps it from molding. The solid bottom keeps the dust from falling on the ground and the bees often work it under the screen...

> 3) Is this a supplement or something used only during a dearth? Should they be placed out all the time, or in Fall? Is this a seasonal thing?

In some locales with bees who build up late, it can be used to stimulate brood rearing in the spring. In most northern locations this doesn't work out as well as expected. They either brood up too early and get caught in a late freeze and starve because they won't abandon the brood, or they brood up too early and get caught in a freeze and end up with chilled brood and then chalkbrood, or they brood up too early, none of the other things go wrong and they swarm in April...

> 4)Where do folks store their unused pollen patties? Fridge? Dry storage? How long can you store it?

Freezer.
 
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