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Author Topic: Feeding after Harvest  (Read 1221 times)
Pond Creek Farm
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« on: July 13, 2011, 08:43:44 PM »

I had a few years where I did not feed and the bees starved.  Last year I fed, but wonder if I fed too much.  Several hives perished over winter but were full of honey.  Is overfeeding in the later summer/fall a cause of filling the brood nest such that the queen cannot produce enough bees to sufficiently overwinter?  If so, how does one strike a balance between enough and too much?
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Brian
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« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2011, 09:07:15 PM »

How are you treating for mites?  I bet you went into winter with high mite counts and low bee numbers.   They were too small too weak to make it through winter.  That is why you have honey left in the dead out.
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Pond Creek Farm
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« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2011, 10:19:37 AM »

I am not treating for mites, so your explanation makes sense. I made splits from the surviving hive this spring.  I really do not want to use the chemicals for the mites (or anything else really).
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Brian
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« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2011, 10:37:09 AM »

You find the balance between not enough and too much by inspecting the colony and seeing how many frames of food the colony has.  You did not say what your colony configuration is, but if you are using 2 deeps the top box should be full.  You can feed all the colony usually requires for winter if you start the last week in September and finish by the middle of October.  Feed a 2 parts sugar to 1 part water syrup.  If in July you removed all the honey the colony stored then feed 1 or 2 gallons of 1:1 syrup in July to carry the colony into September.

If you don't treat for mites then you must accept losses. 
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Finski
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« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2011, 11:22:20 AM »

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If you do not treat varroa, that is surely one explanation why hives die.

Use chemicals  ....you are using chemicals every day, organic or inorganic.

There is no balance feed - not feed. It is a wrong explation.

Hives must be feeded full that hey cap the food.

You seem to have ideas what you hang on tightly, are they relevant or not. It seems not learning. It takes many years to learn, what bees make and what they do not make.
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caticind
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« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2011, 12:39:28 PM »

It was probably the mites that killed your hives rather than anything to do with the feeding.  You don't have to treat for mites, but you should be prepared to lose a large percentage of hives and make up your losses for the survivors.  Sounds like you are already doing this.  How's it going?  What year to year survival rate are you seeing?

Are you checking your mite counts regularly?  I think this is a good idea even if you don't intend to treat, as it will give you data on your own hives as to when the mites build and decline each year, what level of mite population means the hive will die, and which hives might be able to survive.



Sure, we are using chemicals every day Finski.  I used chemicals to wash in the shower this morning, and put more chemicals in my coffee to make it sweet.  But we can choose not to use particular classes (miticides) in particular situations (varroa infestation), provided we think that the costs of using them (sublethal effects, resistance, price) outweigh the consequences of not using them (high colony loss).  Just because they are all chemicals does not make them all equally worth using for everyone.
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The bees would be no help; they would tumble over each other like golden babies and thrum wordlessly on the subjects of queens and sex and pollen-gluey feet. -Palimpsest
Finski
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« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2011, 07:25:08 PM »

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Caticind, I think that you have slept during your chemistry lessons in school.

I can see too that you have not read any mite control research .

Mere rubbish and waste of time this kind of discussion.

I do not wonder why bees try to escape from USA.

Chemicals..... What stuff you use in your car? Running mice?

As I have said, knowledge of varroa control is cliding backwards in USA.. So mad.

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caticind
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« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2011, 10:34:09 AM »

Finski, I think that you have not engaged with my post at all.  Or perhaps not bothered to read it.  Instead you like to take shots at the straw men you imagine for yourself.  I have read every article you have cited in our recent discussions and many others besides.  Nanetti's article on winter deaths in colonies treated with OA was especially interesting.

All I am doing is pointing out to you is that it is neither mad nor rubbish, nor any of the other weasel words you point at people on this board who disagree with you, to reach a different conclusion from the one you do.  Particularly when the factors that we are weighing are different.  What is both vital and effective in your hives in your specific climate, etc, may be unnecessary or ineffective in those of others.  I do not pretend to know what is needed to control mites in Finland.  

All I have done on this forum on the subject of mites is to remind people that they cannot refuse to treat and then be surprised when they lose many hives, and to encourage people to track their mite populations.  I have not weighed in on the subject of acaricides except to say that two of them are no longer effective in the US due to resistance.

There is no straw man here.  You'll have to go hunting somewhere else.

And for your information, I am working on a hybrid drive which utilizes both running mice and the cats that chase them.   rolleyes
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The bees would be no help; they would tumble over each other like golden babies and thrum wordlessly on the subjects of queens and sex and pollen-gluey feet. -Palimpsest
Finski
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« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2011, 01:23:45 PM »

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We use same control methods like in Italy, Switcherland, Germany, Denmark ....

We have nothing own systems here. And why should we have. 5 million inhabitants.
We have none bee researcher here.

But question was varroa in forum member hives. In Filand varroa control concept is well known. If you want to keep bees, you must handle mites, and no one ask "do you like it"

I just say that I have studied biochemistry like plant physiology in university. You cannot pluf me with your antichemistry skills. All my study books were written in English.

5 years ago everyone was saving globe with a stupid wood stick "top bar". It is better first save your own hives.

Do you like fill our car tank with gasolin? - No, tremendous harmfull chemical, global warming, starving shildren in Africa....., and most of all expencive. 80% state taxes.  cry, cry, but I must use my car
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sc-bee
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« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2011, 01:39:02 PM »

I had a few years where I did not feed and the bees starved.  Last year I fed, but wonder if I fed too much.  Several hives perished over winter but were full of honey.  Is overfeeding in the later summer/fall a cause of filling the brood nest such that the queen cannot produce enough bees to sufficiently overwinter?  If so, how does one strike a balance between enough and too much?

Were there many dead bees in your deadout with heads facing down in the cells. A hive can starve in a cluster in cold winter temps with honey right on the hive.
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2011, 05:01:45 PM »

I had a few years where I did not feed and the bees starved.  Last year I fed, but wonder if I fed too much.  Several hives perished over winter but were full of honey.  Is overfeeding in the later summer/fall a cause of filling the brood nest such that the queen cannot produce enough bees to sufficiently overwinter?  If so, how does one strike a balance between enough and too much?

Were there many dead bees in your deadout with heads facing down in the cells. A hive can starve in a cluster in cold winter temps with honey right on the hive.

That is correct.  I've had hives starve because they couldn't break cluster to move the clusterto or move stores to the cluster, and the hive has 50% or more of stores still available. 

A cluster will work in one of two ways, it either starts at the bottom of the lower frames and eats its way to the top (Italians) or it will cluster at the top of the brood combs and retrieve stores during  the warmer parts of winter (Russians).  The Russians do it, as far as I can surmise, so that if a sudden cold snap occurs only a few bees are lost instead of the entire cluster.

Varroa overload is not necessarily the only factor when a colony dies during the winter with stores still available.  One possibility is contaminated honey, especially if the hive had suffered a visable set back during the summer.  Sometimes nectar, containing systemic poisons, are gathered and processed into honey.  during the foraging and processing of the honey the bees that come in contact with such poisons might perish but not the entire hive.  However, when consuming stores during the winter the entire hive is going to be exposed to such contaminated honey, in which case the entire hive new dies.
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Life is a school.  What have you learned?   Brian      The greatest danger to our society is apathy, vote in every election!
Pond Creek Farm
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« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2011, 08:43:21 PM »

The bees that were left (there were few) were found head first in the cells as if they starved due to being stranded away from stores.  That was why I wondered if I had honey bound the brood nest going in to fall and thereby mechancially reduced the number of available bees to overwinter by filling up the cells with sugar water.  I am no expert on varroa and cannot say that the mites got them.  I was more curious on whether I did it by poor management.  Irrespective of the argument, I do not wish to treat, and I am willing to endure the losses as I split and propagate that that live.  I do thin, however, that I should monitor the mite load as recommended above as it will give me good information on what is happening.
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Brian
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« Reply #12 on: July 15, 2011, 10:40:21 PM »

Only had bees 7 season. I don't claim to know much I try to just pass on what I have learned from my mistakes.

I treated for varroa the fist year because that is all a newbee hears in classes. I tried a little essential the second year. I have not put anything in my hives since spring 06 (except a beetle trap). I decided to use the live and let die method. I guess I have been fortunate --- my losses have probably run around 10% maybe a little more or less--- I am sure just  luck and fate not skill Wink

I tried the mite count thing a couple times  the second season( learned nothing from it) and quit on that two. I will check drone brood and usually find very few mites.

I admit it ---- I am LZ grin
« Last Edit: July 16, 2011, 08:21:01 AM by sc-bee » Logged

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Finski
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« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2011, 01:33:02 AM »

.
There are many ways  to die, like Brian says.

1) In my climate / long winter it demand  that the hive stop brooding at the end of summer

2) uncapped food soaks moisture during winter. It swells, it ferments and when the bees eate it. They became sick and come outside to die (try to poo).
Too late feeding or not feeded cells full.

 Too much space over winter

3)  . Not enough winter protection or too small colony. Cluster needs to s use totoo much food to produce energy

4)nosema

5) varroa: varroa hits in autumn with its power to last broo which chuld carry the colony over winter. Those bees which have feeded larvae,will de before and the the rest are too few and sick. Many symptons appear by  varroa.

6) even if the coony does not die, it may become so small that spring build up is very slow.
Varroa weakens the clusters.

7) queen damages and losses are common in winter




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jtow
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« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2011, 08:26:35 PM »

.
There are many ways  to die, like Brian says.

1) In my climate / long winter it demand  that the hive stop brooding at the end of summer

2) uncapped food soaks moisture during winter. It swells, it ferments and when the bees eate it. They became sick and come outside to die (try to poo).
Too late feeding or not feeded cells full.

 Too much space over winter

3)  . Not enough winter protection or too small colony. Cluster needs to s use totoo much food to produce energy

4)nosema

5) varroa: varroa hits in autumn with its power to last broo which chuld carry the colony over winter. Those bees which have feeded larvae,will de before and the the rest are too few and sick. Many symptons appear by  varroa.

6) even if the coony does not die, it may become so small that spring build up is very slow.
Varroa weakens the clusters.

7) queen damages and losses are common in winter





Finski, I have never heard reason #2 above. I wonder how much that does contribute to hive losses as we all tend to feed going into winter if the hive stores are low, so that would lead to open cells of syrup, that could go bad and cause the bees to get sick as you said. Would like to know if that is a big problem in your new or weak hives? Or if Varroa is the largest issue?
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Finski
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« Reply #15 on: July 20, 2011, 04:41:33 PM »

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At least to me nosema has been the largest issue.. Even if t doestnot kill the hive, it weakens colonies and spoil queens. Small colony menns slow build up and delayed foraging.

Queen losses  are common. The queen has lost its laying power even if it was good last summer.

Varroa is OK, if you make treatments carefully. Att least in climate area  where
colonies all have a good brood brake. Then you think that this goes well and you start to trust on luck too much.

In Usa I would say that you use ssouthern beestocks up to Alaska which have no instinkts to winter in "non havaijian " environment.



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