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1st top bar Hive going well

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New Bee

Joined: 10 Jul 2012
Posts: 7
Location: Charlton london

PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 12:47 pm    Post subject: 1st top bar Hive going well Reply with quote

Hello All

I collected my package of bees on Saturday 26th April, as my wife for an unexpected Christmas present had paid the deposit for them, I was hoping to collect or, for a swarm to populate it first but never mind. they came from Payne’s Bee Farm.

The Bees successfully released the queen after about 4 days.

They are currently building nice white comb on about 4 bars, and I have seen lots of different pollen coming in when I have watched returning bees.

I am still feeding sugar syrup, with a homemade feeder using large jam jars with perforated lids, which hold about a Litre and a half between them, which I have at one end of the hive, to help them with comb building. How much longer should I do this, we live in Southeast London with a lot of housing with gardens and large parks nearby.

I am leaving opening the hive at the moment and just checked a couple of times through the observation window to show the children what is going on, although it is very tempting to look more than I should but realise they do not want to be disturbed so have to avoid temptation.

I am looking forward to hopefully many years of top bar beekeeping to come and plan to add another hive next year.


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Fuzzy Bear
Guard Bee

Joined: 20 Jun 2009
Posts: 70
Location: UK, Kent, sandwich

PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 4:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Stevezm, I'm no expert on packages but sounds like you've got off to a great start! Pollen going in is a good sign sounds like they may bee laying eggs or just about to. With regard to feeding I suppose if the weather is good and there is plenty of forage about then hold back on the feeding once it's used up. I don't feed the swarms I get. But a package is slightly different as you can't be sure how much food the bees are carrying with them. Maybe keep an eye on how quick the bees are using the feed as an indicator of whether they need it or not.

Sorry it's not a definite answer either way. Maybe someone else has had a package before and knows what works better.
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Moderator Bee

Joined: 13 Jan 2014
Posts: 125
Location: Batesville, IN USA

PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm working with a mentor, who is trying to get me ready to tend to 45+hives in pretty short order. We installed 25 packages about 2 weeks ago, and even though there is decent pollen and nectar going in, we are continuing to feed as they are building up most of the comb from scratch and it has been running on the cool side here. I believe that with the next inspections, due at the end of the week, we will likely be pulling the feeders. At that time, we will also li,ely be checkerboarding some empty frames into the drawn and (hopefully) filled brood comb.
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Guard Bee

Joined: 25 Jul 2012
Posts: 84
Location: Houston Tx, USA

PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2014 12:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Experience with my Warre's has shown the hive will accept the feed until they decide it is no longer wanted. My hives abruptly stopped feeding when our Tallow trees started blooming. That's when I pulled the feeders. So I'd say leave it on until they stop feeding.
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