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Author Topic: TOP FEEDERS SUCK  (Read 2915 times)
BeeHopper
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« Reply #20 on: April 29, 2007, 12:26:40 PM »

Wire mesh stapled or folded over the sides solved the problem for me.  grin
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #21 on: April 29, 2007, 02:56:14 PM »

http://www.bushfarms.com/beesmisc.htm

These are virtually free...
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
Moonshae
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« Reply #22 on: May 16, 2007, 10:03:36 AM »

I just got my hives, and had ordered top feeders (inevitably) from Betterbee, the ones with feeder access at both ends. They don't have screens, just plastic guards. My question is, do I put it above or below the inner cover? And is it supposed to raise up my outside cover by a substantial amount? I thought it would "tuck inside" a bit better...I'm worried about other flying insects getting in through the top once I install my bees.
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"The mouth of a perfectly contented man is filled with beer." - Egyptian Proverb, 2200 BC
KONASDAD
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« Reply #23 on: May 16, 2007, 11:58:54 AM »

Skip the inner cover w/ top feeder. Make sure telescoping top sits all the way down, or bees will get into from outised and will drown. I used insulation tape for windows on edge of super so top sits on foam and no holes.
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"The more complex the Mind, the Greater the need for the simplicity of Play".
trapperbob
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« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2007, 05:04:43 PM »

I bought a top feeder from beecommerce.com and really like it. I don't think you can use a top feeder and and not drown a few bees but when I check it only a hand full of bees are there less than a dozen.if this worrys you try the paint can like Brian. I have to drive a little ways to check my bees and it holds over 3 gallons so I don't have to worry about them running out. If I had them closer the paint can would be more convenient. Also the bottom feeder that Michael Bush uses is nice I seen this in use at his place over the weekend. He had a workshop.It was easy to fill from what I could see and easy to keep closed.
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BeeHopper
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« Reply #25 on: May 16, 2007, 06:39:26 PM »

I attached a screen to keep them out, problem solved.  Smiley
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johnnybigfish
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« Reply #26 on: May 16, 2007, 09:35:53 PM »

I have the Dadants brown top feeder. I took forever to figure out HOW the bees got throught the white guard slots..I finally realized that they DONT go through the slots but instead stay down under them and watch for me to pour more syrup in the tray.I think now I know how it works....Mostly though I know the syrup dissappears evry 4 or 5 days and I have to add more..And the little bees continue to peer through the slots at me..oh, yeh...I dont use the inner cover yet. I suppose I'll use it when they quit drinking syrup and start getting their own.
your friend,
john grin
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #27 on: May 17, 2007, 09:17:01 AM »

I think ALL feeder suck.  Some more than others.  Smiley

Top feeder advantages (assuming a screened in access area):

Feed without even suiting up.
Feed without opening the hive.
Feed a lot at a time so you don't have to feed as often.

Disadvantages to a top feeder:
They won't take it when it's at all cold.  In times where a baggie feeder or a jar over the cluster will be taken, they won't make the trip up and over to get that cold syrup.  This happens even when it's quite warm in the daytime if it gets cold at night.  For instance if it's in the 30s at night and the 70s in the day they usually won't touch the top feeder where they will suck down the syrup from a baggie feeder, a frame feeder, a jar or bucket over the cluster or a bottom board feeder.

If there is a space for one bee to get in the top cover the feeder will get filled with drowned bees.

You have to remove it to work the hive and if it's full this is VERY awkward.  When queen rearing feeding is a very useful tool just before giving cells to cell starters and just before introducing cells to mating nucs.  With a top feeder you have to remove the feeder to get to the hive to do your manipulations.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
-------------------
"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
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