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Author Topic: Perfect Feeder???  (Read 2950 times)
harvey
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« on: June 16, 2009, 10:25:08 PM »

Hello all,  I was looking around for information on here about feeding, types of feed and when and types of feeders.  Everything i looked at talked about taking hive apart or bees drowning and such.  Most agreed on sugar water though. 

When I first caught the bees I put them in a cardboard box till I could get a hive body.  They were i there for two days and built three pieces of round comb about nine or ten inches across.  I brought these in the house to look at.  One of them was dirty so I attempted to wash it off.  I was amazed that the water stayed in the comb until it was shaken!   I decided to try and use this as a feeder?
I took the comb out and laid it down just outside of the hive.  I then poured the sugar water on the comb.  Just like the water the sugar water stayed in the comb.  I sat and watched as the bees began crawling all over the comb.  They emptied it rather quickly.  Now I am using all three pieces and they clean them out each day.  I have not yet had a bee drown and they are working the frames real well.  maybe a larger piece of comb and put in the top brood box with the syrup on it?
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sc-bee
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« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2009, 11:47:21 PM »

Different strokes --- different folks grin! What I mean is there are an array of feeders, some better than others some very bad.

I use hive top feeders made from half gallon jars. Homemade covers with a hole in the top for the jar. Less hassle to fill and helps reduce robbing.

Stay away from broadmans (robbing) and most division board feeders drown bees.
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« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2009, 06:19:27 AM »

I know there use to be a supplier (Kelley?) who sold a frame filler set-up.  It was an open top tub that you just lowered the frame into and there where jets on each side that sprayed the frame and filled the cells.

Seems like a lot of work and mess to me.  I have the best luck with inverted jars.
http://robo.bushkillfarms.com/beekeeping/feeder-compare/
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sc-bee
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« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2009, 08:03:41 AM »

Walt Wright also wrote an article in Bee Culture about filling frames with sugar water and feeding. Very labor intensive.
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« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2009, 08:10:09 AM »

I use half and one gallon pickle jars on top of the inner cover works great no dead bees
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mgmoore7
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« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2009, 01:14:08 PM »

I use inverted quart and pint jars as well.  I cut a hole in most of my covers that accepts these jars.  If I am not feeding, I will leave the jar lid in the hive top or use some duct tape to cover it up or put a flat stone (like a paver) over the hole. 

I can just glance at them to see if they need to be refilled.  Some of the tops, the holes are screened, others not.  I think the screening is a waste and makes it more difficult for the bees to get the sugar water.
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Natalie
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« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2009, 10:18:27 PM »

I use the wooden hive top feeder with floats from Brushy Mountain and I have no complaints at all.

http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/8-Frame-Hive-Top-Feeder-w_Floats/productinfo/262/


I rarely ever find even one dead bee in it, the floats don't stick and it holds 2 gallons.
I also have some migratory covers with holes cut out for an inverted jar.
Those are convenient because you can see how much syrup is in the jars from the outside and don't have to open the hive to refill them.
The only drawback is they don't hold as much as the hivetop feeder, at least mine don't.
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sc-bee
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« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2009, 09:06:17 AM »

Brushy Mountain Feeder--- $ 18.95 OUCH shocked!

You can cut alot of holes in scrap plywood and get alot free jars with lids for $18.95 --- sho pretty though Wink grin!
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mgmoore7
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« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2009, 10:00:36 AM »

Brushy Mountain Feeder--- $ 18.95 OUCH shocked!

You can cut alot of holes in scrap plywood and get alot free jars with lids for $18.95 --- sho pretty though Wink grin!

Exactly.  I can't see spending money on virtually any feeder when recycled jars work just fine.  I did buy the write size hole saw and that was about $10. 
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Natalie
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« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2009, 03:11:12 PM »


With the amount of money people spend on beekeeping I don't see how a feeder is the place to save.
See to me beekeeping is really not a hobby that you can call cheap, green etc. so to use scrap wood to make a cover or recycled jars isn't really going to turn the whole thing around, especially if you need to go out and actually buy tools to make something.
I do enough projects that I use salvage materials for around here that I don't feel the need to save money on a project that is not cheap in any other way.

I don't have any problem with spending less than $20.00 to be able to throw a feeder on and go on vacation and not worry about who is going to fill all those lovely recycled jars when the syrup runs dry.
2 gallons lasts alot longer than 2 pints or even 2 quarts.

Besides the question asked was about the perfect feeder not the cheapest.
While I do have some of those wood covers with the jars sticking out and they do the job they are not at all attractive so if asthetics matters to you then they are not the best choice, the covers stick on the jars sometimes making it hard to get them off, they can drip and get sticky, they can freeze and crack so they are no good in cold weather...

I like the convenient factor of just lifting the cover of the hive and pouring syrup in the feeder and I am done. I also don't have to worry about leaks and covers getting stuck on the jars
Actually now that I am thinking about this as I type I really don't like the jars that much at all compared to the convenience and asthetics of my other feeder hmm.....       
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mgmoore7
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« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2009, 03:27:04 PM »

Natalie
What if you have 20, 50, 100 or more hives.  Now at $18 per feeder that really adds up compared to almost free.  If you need more capacity, you could use gallon jars too. 

We must realize that are there are two markets in the beekeeping industry.  Those for the hobbiest that likely does not come close to breaking even from the outputs of their hives and those that are trying to run a business for profit or even just try to make it break even.  The mindset is totally different. 

I started out with more of the hobbiest mindset and bought and tried many things without really considering the overall cost.  Now, I am more of the commercial mindset.  I disagree with this statement:  "so to use scrap wood to make a cover or recycled jars isn't really going to turn the whole thing around".  The fact is that businesses fail or don't make profits all the time because they don't find ways to economize.  It can easliy be the difference between feeding the family and or leaving the beekeeping business. 

Your right that the question was the perfect feeder.  Just like many things, all answers are of opinion.  For me, the perfect feeder is easy to maintain and cheap or free.  The inverted jar fullfills that need for me.

I am fortunate to live in a area that feeding is only really necessary to get the bees to build up more quickly.  I don't have winters so feeding a large amount to get them to store it for winter is not needed required and that is another reason that the jars are the perfect feeder for me. 

One other reason I like the inverted jar is that I can control to some degree how much feed they get by changing the quantity of holes in the lid.   

Regarding asthetics.  Again, this is a commercial/hobbiest mindset. 
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kathyp
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« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2009, 03:55:12 PM »

the perfect feeder is what works best for you.  i have tried several different feeders.  finally i settled on jars on the inner cover for individual hives, and poultry waterer for mass feedings.  all are cheep and work well.  i don't like feeders inside the hive because i have enough of a moisture problem here.  if i lived in AZ, they might work for me.

try different things.  if it is time and cost effective, and you like it, it is the perfect feeder for you.  grin
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Natalie
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« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2009, 05:09:03 PM »

Geez Matt are you even serious?
What are you even talking about?  Why are you talking about running a business? Mindsets? We must realize that there are two markets in the beekeeping industry?Huh Uh okay...

He did not ask a question about running commercial hives he asked about a feeder for his One hive so whatever you are talking about is irrelevant.
I am not going to consider any markets when I answer a question based on my opinion.
Most people on here are hobbiests, which I am so why would I have to envision some other market when I answer a question.

Regardless of what you may think I do not have to think about anyone's mindset to answer a question.
You seriously expect someone to answer a question to fit other possible scenarios than the actual situation it is?

He asked about a feeder for his ONE hive not 20,50,100 or more hives that you envision he may have some day down the road.
It was a question from someone asking about a feeder for his individual situation and you are talking about businesses failing and not being able to feed a family and who knows what else.
Not everyone is out to make money or break even which is apparently your mindset so you assume anyone else is wrong for spending money which you actually took the time to point out.

I personally don't care if I ever make money back. This is a hobby, I spend money on my hobbies so therefore my answer reflects that and that is how I plan to answer all questions posed to me.
If people want answers about commercial beekeeping they would post them in a commercial forum.

A question was asked, you answered the question in your post and then I answered the question  based on my experience with the feeders and included a link to be helpful.
You then decided you needed to go back and post again to put down and discount my recommendation because it cost money which you disagree with.
Then I have to go back to defend or explain my reasoning for spending my money on my hobby.

If you actually read my post, I stated throughout -- I, to me, for me etc.
This is from your post:
 I disagree with this statement:  "so to use scrap wood to make a cover or recycled jars isn't really going to turn the whole thing around".

You disagree with this? Seriously? How are you disagreeing with this? Maybe its because you took it out of context.
Here is the actual post the way I wrote it:   
See to me beekeeping is really not a hobby that you can call cheap, green etc. so to use scrap wood to make a cover or recycled jars isn't really going to turn the whole thing around, especially if you need to go out and actually buy tools to make something.
So you are telling me that I am wrong here? That since I have spent hundreds of dollars on hives if I save $18.95 its going to turn my whole situation around? Because I was speaking about my situation not anyone else's which is pretty clear.
My whole post reads that way, its about me yet you take it apart and try to make it about commercial beeks.

Sorry that not everyone agrees with your way of thinking and answers questions honestly based on their experience.



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sc-bee
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« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2009, 07:57:05 AM »

>See to me beekeeping is really not a hobby that you can call cheap, green etc. so to use scrap wood to make a cover or recycled jars isn't really going to turn the whole thing around, especially if you need to go out and actually buy tools to make something.

Whooaaa Nellie no harm intended Kiss I agree top feeders with covers have a place for those who prefer. Especially in cold climates and those with a few hives. And if you are in to looks most definitely more attractive. But my bees don't care Wink

>Besides the question asked was about the perfect feeder not the cheapest.

No such thing except a bloom evil
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Ross
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« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2009, 08:00:45 AM »

For warm weather feeding, 2 gallon plastic bucket from HD with a few holes in the lid and a plywood top with a hole in it.  For winter, dry sugar on newspaper on the top bars. 
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Wes Sapp
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« Reply #15 on: June 19, 2009, 08:26:06 AM »

I use empty 1 gal ice cream pails. I get ice cream the bees get a feeder it's a win win deal.
Spend that $18.95 on some thing more useful like frames.
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Wes Sapp
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« Reply #16 on: June 19, 2009, 12:40:46 PM »

I use a top feeder also, but the one's I use are home made, if you look at Don's (fatbeeman) video on this link http://www.honeybee-news.com/pages/movies/master/  look at the bottom of the page and choose this video to see it "The Fatbeeman on Nuc's and Baby Nuc's" he show one of the top feeder for a 5 frame nuc, the 10 frames are made just like it. nice top feeder, I am building some plus got a few from Dwight Porter (Redtractor1), right now I have about 30 nuc feeders and 21 ten framers going, Dwight and Don has a top feeder for every hive, they both have about 200-400 hives each.
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harvey
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« Reply #17 on: June 19, 2009, 10:06:19 PM »

Wow yall are talking an awful lot of bee's,  I would just like to keep a couple hives happy!  Seems right now as these bee's are pulling comb on brand new frames that I should feed even though they are finding lots of pollen?  Maybe later once the frames are all full of wax I won't need to feed or at least not all that much?   
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #18 on: June 19, 2009, 10:11:18 PM »

If you take a solid bottom and prop the front up with a board and pour syrup in the door you have a FREE feeder.  Smiley
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harvey
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« Reply #19 on: June 19, 2009, 10:30:09 PM »

If you just pour it in like that wont the bees drowd and wont you have a big ant problem?
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