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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good morning all.

I was planning on feeding some of my hives dry sugar cakes in January.

We are having a warm spell with highs nearly in the 60s and lows in the mid 40s for the next 6 days.


Should I go ahead with my plan to give sugar cakes on top of the frames? Or should I mix up some heavy syrup and give it now while we are going to have warm weather? My bees have been flying in the afternoons the last few days.

The hives that I want to feed still have (empty since October) double frame feeders in the outside edge of the top box, so I won't need to disturb any frames to add either liquid or solid.
 

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I am deciding the same and I think I'm going with syrup. Going to be 70 on christmas
 

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Will they have time to dehydrate it before things get cold ? I would consider liquid with temps in the 70's. I would not consider it with overnight lows in the 40's.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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I feed syrup all winter using a hive top feeder . The bees will take it on warmer days and won't touch it when it is cold. Not too worried about them dehydrating it fully as they would need water to be able to use it later. My climate is way different than grozzie's and probably different than yours too, but I would certainly give it a try.

As Brother Adams said, "Listen to the bees and let them guide you".
 

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I'm in Texas. I made fondant last winter and didn't get enough winter to use it all, and I made only half a batch. Syrup, on top of the hive but not where it will drip, in a box for insulation, works for me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the responses everyone.


I think I am going to go with dry sugar cakes because that way they can continue to take it as temperatures dip back down. The warm spell will allow me to add it without chilling the bees.
 

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I was just wondering whether feeding now might spark early brood buildup. We're sure to have some brutal cold before the end of this season.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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My understanding is that feeding syrup does not encourge early brood build up nearly so much as feeding pollen sub does. Starting about now, some brood raising is likely to take place regardless. Won't take the bees long to figure out the days are getting longer.
 

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Thanks for that info, JW. Italian bees, in my understanding, have a tendency to early brood buildup. I don't want to help mine along in that direction! There sure are a lot of bees looking for nectar right now - at the wrong time of year!
 

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Good morning all.

I was planning on feeding some of my hives dry sugar cakes in January.

We are having a warm spell with highs nearly in the 60s and lows in the mid 40s for the next 6 days.


Should I go ahead with my plan to give sugar cakes on top of the frames? Or should I mix up some heavy syrup and give it now while we are going to have warm weather? My bees have been flying in the afternoons the last few days.

The hives that I want to feed still have (empty since October) double frame feeders in the outside edge of the top box, so I won't need to disturb any frames to add either liquid or solid.
Are they light? If yes, I'd say some sort of cake. If not, I'd suggest leaving them alone for a couple of months. Feed demand is low until the queen starts laying in earnest which probably won't be till, maybe, mid March.
 

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In North Texas our flow is so early that brood building now is a normal thing. I put pollen sub out in a feeder and they didn't touch it for about a week, when demand goes up, pollen sub gets collected. They have about emptied the feeder. But henbit is in bloom, and I'm out of sub until my dadant order comes in about a week or so. so henbit should get visited
 
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