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About a week ago the weather here in Southern Ky. kind of warmed up so I figured that my bees could probaly use a little food. Keep in mind this is a first year hive. Hived in May. One full deep in Nov and second one almost full. So my better half made up a gallon of sugar water for me and I put it in my hive top feeder. Yesterday the weather was nearly 60 degrees and a saw plenty of bees flying around. So I figured lets open the feeder and see if they need more syrup. When I opened the feeder it has not been touched. I seriously doubt a ounce is gone. Am I panicing needlessly or do I have something to worry about. Appreciate any input.
 

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Even though they are flying around and moving good, doesn't neccisarily mean they will take the syrup right now. You probably still have some night time low temps, so they are probably still moving slow and haven't found it yet, or don't feel like they need it right now. They'll hit it eventually.
 

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First of all Jim, w/ all of that honey that you say they produced, why did you think that the hive needed feeding? Storing honey is what bees do so that they have something to eat through the winter. If they have the honey that you wrote about, they don't need any more feed.
 

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Mark's point is a good one. If they are light, and you want to feed, drip a couple drips onto the top bars to bait them up. A COUPLE DRIPS... don't wet or chill any bees, just a bit to lure them up is plenty.

But if their stores are adequate, you risk stimulating broodrearing early. Was it light or heavy syrup you fed?
 

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Sorry to hijack this thread, but I am feeding my weak hive with a top feeder and pretty much use a mixture that is based on volume, which comes out 1:1.

They only had about 5 full frames stored away for the Winter and I wanted to make sure they would make it.

This is my first winter, so I am not familiar with 'light' vs 'heavy' or stimulating brood rearing. Any explanation would be helpful.

On a side note, I put 5 lbs of sugar on my strong hive, using the Mountain method that I have read about here, just to give them an extra leg up (they really ate it up, even though they have a full deep of honey above them.)

Thoughts are appreciated.

jt
 

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light syrup simulates a nectar flow. Heavy syrup has more concentration of sugar such as 2:1. Since it has less water, doesn't take as long for bees to evaporate moisture out of it and get it capped. Heavy syrup is usually fed in the fall if you have figured out your bees don't have enough winter stores.

Light syrup fed in spring to stimulate brood rearing and summer months when there is a nectar dearth.
 

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Heavy syrup (2:1) in the fall also helps keep down moisture levels in the hive in the cold weather when you do not want to be adding more moisture than necessary.

Wayne
 
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