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Is there any reason not to use a styrofoam hive top feeder as a water source by simply keeping it full of water?
I just can't help but think that it would cut down on hive energy expenditure from flying back and forth to the other water sources in my yard.
Am I way off base on this?
 

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I don't have the feeder you described but I do use my feeders as waterers. Currently I have 3 pint mason jars in each hive filled with water. I just punch some small holes in the lids and place them on a couple pieces of wood.

The bees havn't complained yet.
 

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That is something I have been thinking about doing too! I also wonder if it would help to regulate the hive temperature? My personal concern is regarding ventilation through the top feeder, if there is enough airflow. Do you use your inner cover under the top feeder to discourage comb building? My top feeder is one with a plastic insert with a center divider and a tray on either side.
 

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I have given this thought also, but here is the concern that has kept me from using them. The top feeder I have holds 3 or so gallons which seems like an easy way to mold or foul the water. There's a good portion of water in honey so the honey is only as good as its source. I tried entrance feeders with water last year and was not able to get to them as often as I would have liked so they got moldy when they weren't using the water, but used it when they needed it. That honey in the supers was no good and I had to get rid of it (I would not even feed back to the bees). It seemed OK up front, but it had an aftertaste that was no good. So i would say that if you can check them often (in your backyard) then it may work out good, but do not let the water go bad.
 
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