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Author Topic: Pollen Patties  (Read 724 times)
Steel Tiger
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« on: April 04, 2013, 04:26:37 PM »

 I went to a local bee supplier for my jacket/veil and a medium and decided to pick up some pollen patties. Should they be stored in the fridge/freezer or will they be ok at room temperature for a few weeks. Would it be better to trash them and buy pollen online...such as off Amazon and use 100% pollen instead of a mixture?
 I was thinking of doing some pollen trapping on and off with the hopes of gathering enough to freeze and give to the hives the following year but it seems to be frowned upon around here due to damaging the bees' legs. Is there a trap that is less likely to damage the bees? I'm one click away from ordering a hive top trap but wanted to get some opinions before I absolutely decide.
 In a month or so I'll be able to sweep up pollen in my yard, could that be saved and used?
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Vance G
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« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2013, 08:24:06 PM »

I would refrigerate the patties wrapped tightly so they don't dry out.  I would trap pollen after the main honey flow but before the fall.  I would freeze that pollen.  The traps all work the same way and it does more damage to wings than legs I think.  That is why I suggest the timing I do.  You will have extra underemployed bees then.  I really like global patties because they are so slow to dry out.  After they dry, the bees don't seem to want to use them.  Remember that patties need to be within a couple inches of brood before they get used well. 
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AllenF
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« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2013, 08:42:24 PM »

I keep mine in the freezer.  You just can't give the bees too much at one time due to SHB.   
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BMAC
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« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2013, 10:50:52 PM »

Stop.  Breath.  Relax.
You have two topics smashed into one.
Down and dirty version:
Just keep your pollen patties from drying out.  I left a 5 gallon bucket of mixed patties in storage for two years and its fine!

Next.  Pollen traps can be very hard on bees.  The two best i have seen are sundance, and dadants cedar traps.  I have used dadant for years with minimal bee damage.  I have seen sundance used with similar results.

Now why do you want to feed pollen or patties?  There are times of year, but not every year where its critical.  What is your thoughts on why to feed pollen?
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Steel Tiger
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« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2013, 11:45:30 PM »

I keep mine in the freezer.  You just can't give the bees too much at one time due to SHB.   
Being as far north as I am, SHB isn't a huge concern. Winters can seem to last forever, we just broke a 2 1/2 month cold spell with temps staying below freezing for the most part. My bees are coming from the south so for this first year I'll be a bit more watchful for them and hope the bees will build their numbers up to combat any SHB they might have brought with them.
Just keep your pollen patties from drying out.  I left a 5 gallon bucket of mixed patties in storage for two years and its fine!
I didn't know if pollen patties spoiled if left unrefrigerated.
 
Next.  Pollen traps can be very hard on bees.  The two best i have seen are sundance, and dadants cedar traps.  I have used dadant for years with minimal bee damage.  I have seen sundance used with similar results.
I was looking at the Sundance top hive trap.
 
Now why do you want to feed pollen or patties?  There are times of year, but not every year where its critical.  What is your thoughts on why to feed pollen?
Ideally, I won't have to feed the bees at all, Mother Nature doesn't always cooperate though.
This year we're having a late spring so by the time I get my bees next month, there'll be enough pollen in the area to take care of dozens of hives...with plenty to spare. That doesn't mean there'll be enough at the end of the year for a good stores for the spring brood.
 Basically, I hope for the best but want to be prepared for the worse.
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