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Author Topic: Hive top feeder and upper entrance  (Read 3668 times)
Kris^
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« on: February 15, 2005, 10:44:52 PM »

I installed one of the hive-top feeders I recently built (and managed to get to stop leaking!), which are based on the Miller-type feeder plans available on the beesource.com site.  I put it in place of the sugar board, sitting right on top of the makeshift Imirie shim I use to create an upper entrance.

The bees have been very active recently, particularly today as the temperature passed 60 degrees.  They've been using both entrances to come and go, doing orientation flights and even visiting the pansies in the greenhouse.  However, none of them have gone into the feeder yet.  

Should I leave the upper entrance on the hive?  Or should I remove it as a means of enticing them up into the feeder where the syrup is?  Or should I just wait and see what develops?

By the way, the directions Jay posted for cutting box joints were extremely useful.  I ended up making 8 supers over the weekend, 4 deeps and 4 mediums.  They turned out really nice and solid.  I tried cutting the handles in the sides like he showed, too, but didn't have enough large clamps to do the job right.  So I just attached six inch cleats about 2 inches from the top, and that is the only way to distinguish between the newly built ones and the ones I bought last year.  Thanks!

-- Kris
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Robo
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« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2005, 09:20:36 AM »

Quote from: Kris^
I installed one of the hive-top feeders I recently built (and managed to get to stop leaking!), which are based on the Miller-type feeder plans available on the beesource.com site.


I use to use those feeders and can offer a modification.  If the syrup gets low enough for the bees to get under the divider, large amounts of bees will get covered in syrup and drown.  Either use a float block that is thick enough to not allow them access (though I have had the floats get hung up on one end and still give them access) or place some screen over the space below the divider where the syrup flows thru.

One on the draw backs of these feeders are that the bees must find their way through the maze (up and down) to the syrup.  I don't know if closing the upper entrance will help.  Every day it takes them to locate it,  is one less quart of syrup they could have taken.  Also remember they will only feed during the day when the temperatures are warm enough for them to move about.

The best way to seal them is to melt some bees wax and pour it into a corner and then roll the feeder in a circle so that the molten wax flows across all the seams.
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Lesli
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« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2005, 02:16:42 PM »

One on the draw backs of these feeders are that the bees must find their way through the maze ...

I wonder if putting a little lemongrass essential oil or honey-b-healthy wouldn't help with that. Don't bees have a keen sense of smell?
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Kris^
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« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2005, 07:04:12 PM »

Well, I discovered something today . . . removing the upper entrance DID entice the bees into the top feeder.   This feeder went untouched for a week since I placed in on the hive, even during the 60+ degree days.  I took out the upper entrance this morning and less than 4 hours later:



What a difference!  It wasn't even that warm today.  

-- Kris
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Horns Pure Honey
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« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2005, 10:18:32 PM »

wow, that looks really good Kris, bye Cheesy
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Ryan Horn
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