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Author Topic: Another Powdered sugar question...  (Read 2979 times)
ZuniBee
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« on: March 23, 2007, 10:24:25 PM »

I am installing package bees this year. How long should I wait after in install them before doing the first powdered sugar treatment?
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Mici
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« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2007, 07:47:04 AM »

package bees you say huh? package bees aren't used around here, BUT since you get ONLY bees, no brood no nothing, i'd just throw in a pound of powdered sugar and shake them, after that i'd put them in a box with screened bottom, this way you should be able to get rid of most of the varooa present.

but, that's just me, wait till more experienced fellas around here get a word on this one.
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ZuniBee
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« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2007, 08:43:22 AM »

This is exactly what I was thinking of doing. As a newBee it makes sense to me to give them a treatment before they get started. However, I wanted to ask because what always seems to make sense doesn't always end up being the right thing to do. Thanks for your reply.
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Understudy
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« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2007, 10:10:44 AM »

There is no reason to give a powdered sugar treatment to bees before they have started to have brood. While you may cause the bees to go into a cleaning mode you will also disrupt them and as a fresh package they are not yet a cohesive unit. Give the bees a chance to start laying brood, then go for a cleaning. It will also help to make sure numbers are getting replenished.

Sincerely,
Brendhan
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2007, 11:13:20 AM »

The easiest time to treat them with powdered sugar is when they are still in the package.
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Michael Bush
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Mici
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« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2007, 12:09:16 PM »

understudy, since i get your point as disturbing the bees, isn't the package the best time to be treated before it's moved in? there is no brood so by treating the package you would get every varoa, why let a few sneak inside the brood cells?
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ZuniBee
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« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2007, 12:35:52 PM »

This is what I was thinking...get the varoa off before the bees produce brood. If I do it in the package should I just sift a pound of powdered sugar in the package and shake them and then put them in the hive? Or should I put the powdered sugar on them shake them and leave them in the package for a while then put them in the new hive?

Thanks to everyone for their help.. Jay
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Mici
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« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2007, 12:43:51 PM »

i'd put them in another box, like i said, one with screened bottom, coz the sugar doesn't kill varoa, it just causes it to fall of, now if you let varoa fall on the bottom, they'll just crawl back up on the bees. i don't think it would be the best idea to put bees all upset into the hive but i don't know, maybe it would be ok
btw, i said a pound of sugar just as a matter of speaking a pound might be a bit too much Smiley
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kathyp
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« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2007, 02:13:52 PM »

first question:  is this the first time you have handled bees?  if it is, i'd just get them in the hive and figure you'd done a good days work.

not much bothers me, and i don't mind getting stung.  however, by the time i got home with that buzzing box in my back seat, i needed a shot of vodka just to think about opening them up.

they have already had the trauma of being transported.  you need to face the trauma of hiving them.  giving them, and you, a few days will not hurt anything.  they will always have mites no matter how you treat them.  a few, more or less, will not matter in the long run.

disclaimer....MB and Understudy have years of practice.  i am starting my 2nd year. 
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« Reply #9 on: March 24, 2007, 02:26:38 PM »

disclaimer....MB and Understudy have years of practice.  i am starting my 2nd year. 

their advice are very contradictory
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ZuniBee
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« Reply #10 on: March 24, 2007, 02:47:39 PM »

Quote
first question:  is this the first time you have handled bees?

Yes, it is the very first time.

Quote
i needed a shot of vodka just to think about opening them up.

Now that is the best advice I have gotten so far! Seriously, I'm not worried about a sting and don't think I'll have a problem working with the girls. However, I'm saying this sitting in my chair in the house. When I have actual bees buzzing around it may be different. One thing I am doing is documenting my experience on video so I guess everyone will be able to see how I react once the bees are here....

Quote
their advice are very contradictory

This is what I have noticed in the beekeeping world and this is one of the things I like. There are so many ways to do things... I guess you have to listen to them all and determine what works best for your individual case. I'm just glad everyone is willing to share their way and help out.
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Understudy
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« Reply #11 on: March 24, 2007, 08:44:36 PM »

I understand Michael's point. And if I had to defer I would defer to him. He has more experience than I do. What is one of the nice things about the forum is you can get two different answers and they may both be right or they may both be wrong or somewhere in the middle. It for me may be the way of handling a package. I try not to do anything to disturb them when I first get them(Note I am probably not buying any this year, since my hives are doing well and cut outs have been a boom). I want the bees to accept the queen. The most I have ever done is spray them with sugar water but that is to keep them nice and calm. I am not sure powdered sugar right off the back would help that. I would also think that the powdered sugar would kill weak bees that didn't travel very well. And I want the bees to be as numerous as possible for as long as possible. If you suffer loses on bee numbers between the time they arrive and the time she starts laying you may end up with a weak hive. In my opinion dusting the bees at that stage would be harmful.

Please remember I am also using small cell when they get into the hive. The varroa are going away as each new generation comes around. I would however do a treatment shortly after the queen has started laying.

So don't worry you are not going to hurt my feelings if you go with Michael's advice. He gives very sound advice. Michael and I agree on a lot but not every single thing.

Sincerely,
Brendhan
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #12 on: March 25, 2007, 01:59:21 AM »

>Please remember I am also using small cell when they get into the hive.

So am I, and mites aren't a issue for me.  But assuming they are an issue for you, powdered sugar is much more effective with no brood and much more effective when you have them in a package.
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Michael Bush
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Ken
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« Reply #13 on: March 25, 2007, 06:38:38 AM »

Is the confectioners or 10x sugar considered powdered sugar or shuld I take a rolling pin to table sugar in a freezer bag or something?
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Cindi
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« Reply #14 on: March 25, 2007, 09:57:42 AM »

Ken, yes, confectioners sugar.  Rolling white sugar does not get the sugar fine enough.  The article I read on powdered sugar indicated the finer the "dust" the better, it should be dusty, as fine a particle that can be obtained.  Best of the day.  Cindi
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« Reply #15 on: March 26, 2007, 01:29:49 AM »

Stress free way to introduce packages bees to their hive.  shake with powdered sugar.  Remove feeder can.  Re move queen cage.  Set box upside down on top of frames inside of a super and let the bees crawl out on their own.  Refill feeder can and place beside package. Release queen directly onto frames. Put on top and come back tomorrow.  Remove package and refill feeder can or replace with larger feeder.
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