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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Our bees "god willing" will be going into early almonds this next season and I need to make sure these hives are built up so they'll be good bees for the growers.

My plan is to dry feed pollen sub in October. Is this right? I have battled hive beetles in the past when I've used patties so there's now way I want to do that again.

I also plan on feeding light syrup around the middle of Dec. or the first week of Jan.

Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

Also, if someone has a broker that they would recommend that would be a blessing also.

Thank you.
 

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I don't know that bees do pack away dry pollen substitute. Put it out in a free range feeder and see if they take it. I think it is more a case of immediate use. But I don't kn ow for sure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I dry fed last year a little and they took it till the rain came. Not sure about storing it neither. I wonder if you could add something to it like beet flour or something to add color so you could track it.

I'll look in to it.
 

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>Whats the best time to put out dry pollen sub so the bees can pack it away for spring

I don't want them to pack pollen sub away, I want them to pack real pollen away, so in my opinion, never is a very good time...

When they have any use for it at all is when there is a pollen dearth. Here, this occurs sometimes in the fall when the fall flow fails... but usually (at least more than half the time) the fall flow doesn't fail.
 

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image.jpg I start as soon as the bees will take it. Bees will store the dry feed. I feed both wet patties and dry feed, bee forage and treat it like natural pollen. Here in central California we are in a exceptional drought D4 ( worse then extreme drought ) there is no fall forage the smart money is on supplemental feed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks David!

That's exactly what I was looking for. I'll be going to the bee yard this next week so I'll leave some out in a empty hive and see what happens.

By the picture it looks like their taking it in November. Did you have it out earlier?
 

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I take some of my dry feed then in a spray bottle I mix 25% lemongrass EO and 75% virgin coconut oil then spray the dry mix as I run it through a strainer. I started feeding mid September. You can also put it in a 5 gallon bucket at a angle and rotate it every few days image.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Is the lemongrass to attract them and the oils to add fat?

WOW! I just read your signature at the bottom of your post. I haven't gone to your site yet but when you say your only treatment is essential oils are you able to share any recipes? I was thinking that would be a good way to go but haven't found a good true recipe. I've been contemplating about mixing a bunch of different thing together like thymol, eucalyptus and ceder.
 

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Last winter was my first time to over winter my bees in Cali. I ran into a problem with the ranch I was on feeding a dry supplement to there cattle. I ended up feeding a dry pollen sub the whole time I was down there. I fed it in 5 gallon buckets with half the lid cut out to help keep the rain out. I also laid a small branch in each bucket to help the bees get out as they realy get covered in this stuff. The bees went through 50 pounds a week for 65 hives. I don't know if the sub helped but I had a pretty decent grade going into the almonds. This year I am going to use a 55 gallen drum set up.
 

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This year I am going to use a 55 gallen drum set up.
Lay the drum on its side tipped ahead slightly and use a lever locking ring to secure a piece of chicken wire. Lots of animals love to lick on the stuff. I tried it once without the chicken wire and ended up feeding a bunch of dogs.
 

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Yes and yes. there are a lot of different recipes out there the easiest is 11 pounds of thymol to 3 gallons of oil then 18 ml per colonies 3x a week apart. Use at your own risk what work for one may not work for someone else. Mine is a little more complex. I soak on a cotton makup pad you can also use a shop towel.
 

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When I open feed pollen I put a solid bottom board down, then a screened bottom board, then some window screen then a box. I dump the pollen on the window screen and then put a cover on top. This keeps the pollen up where it doesn't mold like it does directly on the solid bottom board.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I want to take a minute and say thank you to everyone for your great ideas. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to learn from your trials and tribulations.

Jim- I like the idea of using the barrel, especially the chicken wire. I wouldn't have thought about that.

David- Thank you for the treatment recipe. It sounds like a good starting point. Right now I was taught to use a little thymol oil, wintergreen oil, and Amitraz mixed into vegetable oil and soaked into blue paper towels. I've seen a resistance with our house pets and the over the counter flea treatments and fear that with the bees. An old school beekeeper down in AZ dust his hives with garlic. Not sure when or how often. Do you ever get hive beetles when you use the patties? My first winter keeping bees I used patties and had the bees under some black walnuts and the beetles took out at least a third of them. At that time I was using Apigaurd.

zhiv9 and Vance G- I think your right. I read an article that Randy Oliver wrote about fattening bees up before winter with pollen or sub. I guess that's what their doing with it instead of storing it.

red- Me to. What ever their doing with it I want to make sure they have it. I had good bees going into almonds last year. Better than in past years.

Michael- I got rid of my screened bottom boards but do you think a queen excluder with some window screen and a deep box would work?
 
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