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Author Topic: Water for the girls  (Read 2712 times)
Potlicker1
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« on: August 10, 2007, 06:35:07 PM »

Like most of you in the country I'm sure, things are as dry as a popcorn fart. We've had 2" of rain in the last 7 weeks. I'm concerned the colonies are wasting time foraging for water and not honey sources.Although I have a river less than a quarter mile away, which is more like a stream, I've had a brain child to provide water for them at the hive to help them. I've filled my boardman feeders with "water only" and slid it into place. In the last 3 days they seem to be taking some down but not a great deal of it. My question is if I'm producing potential problems. Has any one tryed this before?
Looking for some feedback.  jail
« Last Edit: August 10, 2007, 08:01:38 PM by Potlicker1 » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2007, 06:40:24 PM »

Put a little clorox in it.  If they don't take it then,  they aren't hard up for water.
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« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2007, 06:42:01 PM »

i've been considering this for overwintering, to be causing problems...i don't really know but i can tell you something.
look closely for chalk brood because what i have observed is...
i had a bit weak hive a month ago, and i fed it, a little, the hive has an open feeder within the hive (it's different type of hive to what you're used to) so...the next day  checked and they didn't take all the syrup, and in the next week, the hive head somwhat severe chalk brood. i assumed this is due to increased moisture. now...with boardman feeder you actually shouldn't have this problem, since the water isn't actually exposed, and it took me the whole post to realise this and to realise my writing was in VAIN. ahahah LOL, impressed by my own stupidity.

i can't see how it could cause problems, but bees do like minerals in their water so a tiny pinch of salt might encourage them, don't know about other minerals though...
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sean
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« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2007, 06:50:52 PM »

Put a little clorox in it.  If they don't take it then,  they aren't hard up for water.

whats the chlorox for?
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Potlicker1
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« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2007, 08:03:55 PM »

Yeah, is the clorox to extend the life quality of the water? So it won't go stale. Bees seem to be able to take water from a slew hole if necessary.?
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reinbeau
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« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2007, 08:29:45 PM »

Bees seem to like chlorine in their water.  Try keeping bees next to a neighbor with a pool.  Especially a neighbor who has decided she hates bees.  rolleyes
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« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2007, 08:53:03 PM »

Yes, the chlorine will make it more appealing to them.  Salt may work too, but just like humans, too much salt isn't good.  So it is not recommended to force it to them in water, rather provide it dry so they can take it if they need it.
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FordGuy
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« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2007, 10:40:07 PM »

my opinion - water is invisible without a tracking scent, clorox, lemon, mud stink, you get the picture...
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kathyp
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« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2007, 11:00:28 PM »

i had a 100 gallon water tank that i had upended.  the rain water gathered in the ribs on the bottom.  the bees found it and it has been their favorite water source since.  kind of limits my use of the tank, and i have to fill the little spaces up every day......oh well, keeps the bees at home.
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« Reply #9 on: August 11, 2007, 09:57:54 AM »

I keep a pot of very moist spaghnum moss. My bees are all over it. Makes it tough when I am working on my Neps. So I created a second one. That way there is always one on the ground for them. they still get testy but not as much.

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gunny
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« Reply #10 on: August 11, 2007, 10:19:57 AM »

Dry here too.

Saw a tree chasing a dog yesterday.

Tried supplying water in some shallow containers near the hives, they don't want a thing to do with it.  Now the neighbor's cat water bowls are another matter.  There must be a few hundred there at any time.  Cats won't go near the water until after dark and the bees go home.  Would think they'd get on my AC condensate drain as its a whole lot closer but no.  Too cold?  Maybe the cat spit in the water?



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Mici
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« Reply #11 on: August 11, 2007, 10:24:16 AM »

condensed water is worthless to any living creature. even alges won't grow in it (at least for some time).
it has no minerals no nothing. bees know that.
also, like some speculation say, this water is odorless so they probably don't even know it's there, they just can't recruit foragers  because they can't give them a sample of what they're suposed to go after.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #12 on: August 11, 2007, 02:21:32 PM »

I use five gallon buckets with lots of sticks in them. The bees crawl down the sticks to the water.  I have to dump them out and refill them about once a week to get rid of the mosquito larvae.
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« Reply #13 on: August 11, 2007, 05:13:57 PM »

An old beek friend of mine told me when i first started that bees don't like a water source right up to the hive and that at least 50 feet away is ideal. I have followed this and keep a slow dripping faucet and they love that. Anyone else know of this line of thinking? I just took it as gospel as this dude has been caring for bees for fifty years.
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Potlicker1
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« Reply #14 on: August 11, 2007, 05:45:22 PM »

I respect old timmers and their trial by fire over the years. I can say it appears my bees are taking the water provided at the hive. It's like feeding without the sugar. I suppose there are variables in everything. I think I'll continue to moniter them and look for issues on a day by day basis.
Thanks for all the great advise.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #15 on: August 11, 2007, 06:14:25 PM »

Mine are by my faucet which is more than 100 yards from the hive, but that's because it's convenient for me.  There's a creek that's only another 100 yards, but they seem to like the neighbor's bird bath too much, so I try to distract them from that.
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Michael Bush
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DavePaulson
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« Reply #16 on: August 11, 2007, 07:11:13 PM »

I have one hive at my house in town. I keep the water for it about five feet away they use it just fine. Dont want them in the neighbors pool. So far so good.
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reinbeau
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« Reply #17 on: August 12, 2007, 12:49:57 PM »

Up in Maine there are two five gallon buckets with wood floating in them right in front of the hives, and the girls are in them constantly. 
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Moonshae
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« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2007, 07:17:29 PM »

I've tried to provide water just outside my hives, with no success. I had some brief success with it about 30 feet away, then they discovered my neighbor's pool 20 feet away. Now I use entrance feeders with tap water, and they take it just fine, and I've never seen them go up and then down over the fence toward the pool.
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Cindi
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« Reply #19 on: August 13, 2007, 10:08:00 AM »

A small distance from my apiary site, which is on a knoll, I have a hose that drips down the bank of a little ditch that I dug for drainage across my property.  This ditch is always moist and the bees love it.  The side bank of this little ditch always has tons of bees sucking up the moisture, it is in full sun, so it is warm moisture, they prefer warm to cold water. 

They still suck up the water that the kids spill out of the pool onto the poool edge, the kids all know to be very careful of where they walk at the shallow end.  The bees only seem to take the water from the shallow end, the water spilled on the deep end never seems to be touched, go figure that one.  Have a wonderful day, beautiful life.  Cindi

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« Reply #20 on: September 04, 2007, 04:14:17 PM »

Put a little clorox in it.  If they don't take it then,  they aren't hard up for water.

How much clorox in how much water?
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #21 on: September 04, 2007, 08:55:31 PM »

I wouldn't put more than you'd put in swimming pool water.  I'd think a capful would be plenty in a five gallon bucket.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #22 on: September 05, 2007, 08:29:08 AM »

I usually just put a splash into 4-5 gallons.   Don't forget, if it is an open container, the chlorine will evaporate out over time,  just like a swimming pool.
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