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feeding? pre-panic

 
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jnickison1
Guard Bee


Joined: 20 Mar 2016
Posts: 69
Location: USA, Michigan, Mecosta.

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 11:19 pm    Post subject: feeding? pre-panic Reply with quote

Hi all, fantastic forum!
Just got two nucs, chopped and cropped brood/honey/nectar on 5 frames each hive into my two home made 48" TBhs.
I was advised to set up a feeding station 1/1 half way between my hives. Have seen lots of traffic in and out of the hives but no interest in the syrup. Does this mean they have enough in the hives or should I continue to leave the station available-I guess I'm also concerned about attracting wasps/hornets, etc.
Thanks in advance for your help.
regards,

John.
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Adam Rose
Silver Bee


Joined: 09 Oct 2011
Posts: 582
Location: Manchester, UK

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 11:51 pm    Post subject: Re: feeding? pre-panic Reply with quote

jnickison1 wrote:
Hi all, fantastic forum!
Just got two nucs, chopped and cropped brood/honey/nectar on 5 frames each hive into my two home made 48" TBhs.
I was advised to set up a feeding station 1/1 half way between my hives. Have seen lots of traffic in and out of the hives but no interest in the syrup. Does this mean they have enough in the hives or should I continue to leave the station available-I guess I'm also concerned about attracting wasps/hornets, etc.
Thanks in advance for your help.
regards,

John.


John,

It would help if you told us a bit more about your location - at least which state you are in. That way we would have a clue about your climate and there might well be local beekeepers on this forum who will be able to give the best advice.

You say that there is lots of traffic in and out, so they must be flying somewhere. If they're not interested in the food you are providing, most likely they have enough from other sources. In this case that would be the honey you cropped and chopped and anything that is flowering.

Are there plenty of suitable plants in flower ? Do you notice them feeding on any particular flowers or trees nearby ? Are they bringing pollen back in as well as nectar ? Can local beeks tell you what they are likely to be feeding on at this time of year ? Can they tell you when the bees build up stores and when they run them down ?

I would suggest taking the nectar away, unless there are specific reasons not to. And if you really need to feed, there are various ways of doing it inside the hive. If the weather turns ( maybe becomes either too hot and dry or too cold or too wet ) then you can think about feeding then. And when you do it, you might want to provide the feed inside the hive.

Adam.
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1563
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2016 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think Adam means taking the syrup away, rather than nectar.

I'm not a fan of external feeding stations because it can attract robbers into your area and when you stop filling it or remove it, they then look for the next nearest available source which could then be one of your hives or both. Making a simple feeder and placing it in the back of the hive and closing down the entrance to just one hole or even half a hole is the best bet if they need feeding, but if they have some stores and there is a nectar flow then I would be inclined not to artificially feed them, unless you hit a dearth/drought or they are clearly getting low.

There does seem to be a mentality of feeding bees when you first get them to make them grow large quickly, but in my experience big is not always best and letting them expand naturally with the local conditions enables them to be better adapted and in harmony with their landscape and climate. That's not to say you should let them starve if they get low on stores, but if they seem happy and are flying well then remove the feeder and just monitor them on a regular basis. It's not a race to build a whole hive of comb in the first year and in many respects small colonies are easier to handle and therefore learn your basic beekeeping skills on and in my experience seem to survive better.

Good luck with them.

Barbara
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jnickison1
Guard Bee


Joined: 20 Mar 2016
Posts: 69
Location: USA, Michigan, Mecosta.

PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2016 5:04 pm    Post subject: Re: pre panic.... Reply with quote

Adam/Barbara, thanks so much for the speedy replies. Adam, just a quick note to say that I am from Stockport/Macclesfield-not too far from you. Was born in Walsall and moved north at about 3yoa.
OK; I live in Michigan about 50 mins directly north of Grand Rapids. Some flowers blooming but mostly trees and shrubs. I have about 6 acres with apple trees, blueberries, maples, pines, etc., etc. Just checked the hives again and much much traffic. They seem to be very busy, not frantic. Have not noticed pollen, today is a busy day at work for me so I will do some serious Bee watching tomorrow (have to admit it's rather addicting).
Thanks again for the support.

John
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jnickison1
Guard Bee


Joined: 20 Mar 2016
Posts: 69
Location: USA, Michigan, Mecosta.

PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2016 5:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Re: pre panic Reply with quote

Just forgot to say that I have removed the syrup.

John.
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