Being a 2nd year beekeeper with 0 experience or exposure to beekeeping in the past and taking on this this responsibilty at this time of year and then reading about how this is the toughest time to survive for bees in my region….. I’m a bit freaked out and am scrambling for a feeding method that’s quick to install and prepare and is long lasting. So too big can be tricky too. I just finished making candy boards. Using hardware cloth with very small spacing (basically what you would find in a screen window) for the moisture quilts. So the next year I made it into a winter feeding board using 1″x1″ scrap wood. It seems feeding sugar this way (it has water in it) is easier and less disruptive of the hive. Thanks, John. Do bees reject candy boards? Has that changed with this new method of no-cook-sugar/candy-boards with ‘free choice’ patties, only February is a while past the solstice. It says: If the insect is what the name implies, write the two words separately; otherwise run them together. Moisture Quilt Finally, have you seen those new injection molded frames? We did a careful accounting yesterday, inspecting all the frames to see how much is in there and it’s hard to know as newbies, how to assess partial frames, honey in the corners around brood, etc. Lastly, like you, I like to have a little protein available to ensure the queen can continue to lay as needed through the winter. Just above the brood box I added the Imirie shim with the opening in front, then the candy board, then the quilt, then the lid. Start with a small amount and add more if necessary, but remember the more water you add, the longer it will take to harden. I can always just place a pollen patty on top of the sugar later in the year. The honey bee is an insect and is preeminently a bee; “honeybee” is equivalent to “Johnsmith.” Thank you in advance for reading my comment. Then I just tamped it down until firm. I already have the metal ones. Thank you. Should I add some less dense blocks or is the hardness of sugar not an issue. I placed an Imrie shim beneath my candy board. Way to make a newbie feel welcome. I do not have an aversion to tissue paper and dry sugar, but my major overwintering problem is moisture, so I try to provide a clear pathway for the water vapor to reach the moisture quilt. These are the feeder frames that have a 3″ hole in the center where a plastic tray is placed so you can feed sugar syrup. So stuff beneath the combs is not in the right place. I will keep you posted. .burrr. I decided on ten pounds of sugar per candy board based on talking to beekeepers in similar areas. Here are the injection-molded frames (i.e. Good afternoon. The entire “invert-the-sugar-for-the-bees” argument is kind of ridiculous anyway because honey bees do it instantaneously, thanks to the enzymes in their saliva. I wrote a post about this a while back, but the board in that example contained cooked candy. Are you still employing this method, are you switching to the no-cook candy board, a little of both, or am I completely mistaken from the get go? Generally, bees will not eat sugar that’s on the floor like that. Do you or any of your Langley BC readers know where to purchase bakers sugar? Even the bag is gone. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. I have a southern package of Italians in four mediums with two full mediums of capped honey (approx. They do look bigger than the summer variety. As I explain in other parts of this site, my job is not to tell a beekeeper “you should do it this way.” My job is to offer alternatives, to describe ways that some people found helpful, and when I know the science behind something, I try to explain it. Don’t worry about it too much. I’ve overwintered 100% of my colonies numerous times using this system, so I have no reason to change it. I have a small colony, an August swarm…she’s a good queen and I concluded the bees were so few they wouldn’t have added much to my other two strong hives, so I decided to try and keep them going. I still check in February to see if they need more sugar. I think I remember reading on your site, possibly in the comments to one of your posts, that you were switching to the “Mountain Camp” dry sugar style of feeding. Some of the moisture will condense on the underside of the candy board, which is a good thing because moisture on the surface of the hard candy allows the bees to consume it with ease. Actually, they did really well and bounded into spring with no problem. Hi Rusty, I have a tbh so I have made the sugar bricks really thin and placed on wax paper and slide under comb. I could have left out the pollen, but I didn’t. I understand now. The design of top-bar hives varies tremendously. Will the bees have trouble if the blocks are too hard? Winter bees are not bigger, they are the same size. Thanks so much for your great advice. You may find they cart out crystals for a while and then stop when the boards harden, which they will do. If they run out of honey you will be glad you used the boards. Lots of types of nectar have high levels of sucrose, and honey bees have no issue with this, inverting it without knowing it. But I do feel better having backup food on the hives, especially since our hot and dry summer produced very little in the way of nectar. It makes it hard to know how much honey they actually have. The closest relative of a North American native bee to make the list is the Tarantula Hawk Wasp, the state insect of New Mexico. Done. I am planning on leaving the entrance reducer on the bottom of the hives with the large opening on. Is there a reason that you don’t use purchased pollen patties and instead make your own? I’ve used your suggestion for the past three years, I’ve been keeping bees for about 7 years, at first I had two or three hives and each year I lost all my hives. And finally, yes, I find early pollen feeding to be detrimental to colony development. I wanted a no-cook candy board for several reasons. I just think it’s an interesting distinction, and I’ve raised the question on a few forums and had no one give a good opinion. Please correct me if I’m wrong. As you recall, I had the “freak wind” accident and I do think my bees were weakened. I took one & attached hardware cloth that I shaped to fit the slanted sides. I thought it would be a dry mess, but the small amount of water was amazing. Sometimes the boards are empty by then. Good thinking! (We don’t need moisture quilts in our area, Northeast Kansas). I’m not sure which aspect you are worried about, but you can relax. I made the quilt box with your original instructions before reading that you switched to hardware screen, but also I don’t necessarily want to buy another frame, or try to make one (not a good carpenter yet). Still, in the prior years no one could have convinced me to try them. Wintergreen probably won’t hurt anything, but it probably won’t help either. So yes, you can use a candy board for regular winter feed, which is what I do. candy board. The workers often congregate in great numbers up there, so they need every bit of that 2-3 inch space. I believe in the comments you said you put this no-cook-candy-board on in November. Or is the quilt there to capture the moisture that makes it through the cleared area which will grow if the bees eat up the sugar? Also, hundreds of other beekeepers have told me how well these have worked. Your blog and website is a favorite of mine. I let them harden for 4-5 days. Hi Rusty. Rusty, You don’t need to worry about drones because there are no drones in the winter. I don’t believe in telling a beekeeper how to to things because, believe it or not, beekeeping is very personal. If you want to use Mountain Camp, I see nothing wrong with it. I could do 16 hives in an hour. Or do beekeepers only do one or the other? I stop feeding sugar when the first nectar flow starts, not according to the calendar. Last fall all my hives were short going into winter because of the long drought, so they needed lots of feed. I plan to remove the feeders soon, and I wanted to use the granulated sugar pile on newspaper method of feeding and invert the Vivaldi board frame over the sugar, then place the quilt box above that, then the outer cover. Regarding tbh top bar separation, how much separation? And it will be the end of April before there is pollen to be had here, so the candy board should do until then? I’m worried that the 3″ hole may not let enough air flow through, but wanted to try it because the Vivaldi board would support the cloth bottom of the quilt box as well as provide room for the sugar pile. I’m in north central Texas. I'm the very first user of HoneyMoney, but there're also hundreds of other happy users. Placed newspaper into the oiled pan. And, I suppose, /why/ use wintergreen. How has your experience been with this? They work so well they feel like magic. Beezy Beez is so sure that you will love our products, that weoffer a 100% money back guarantee for 365 days. Thank you. You buy sugar, add water, then cook to drive out the water. If the bars are packed closely together I wonder how the moisture would rise otherwise? This is what dissolves the candy enough for them to eat it. You can put your upper entrance wherever you like, but as long as the colony is alive, air will flow from the bottom of the hive to the top because warm air rises. I sometimes get confused by the various different feeding methods (i.e. Without knowing your climate, I have no idea. I have a shim board that’s about an inch tall that provides room for the sugar to be placed below the inner cover. However, even if there were drones, they don’t eat from a candy board. I don’t think the gaps will allow lots of air flow, but if it worries you, you could wrap them with duct tape. I did not fasten them to the wooden feeder frame as the packed & hardened sugar held them in place while carefully carrying them and placing them on the hives. I will be using this for next winter. Is there any danger of the cluster eventually moving through the excluder by the end of winter and leaving the queen behind? I also read that you don’t want anything solid between the brood food and the quilt box. Thanks, Rusty, for sharing your genius. It doesn’t make any difference. I plan to use them again this year for any colonies that need feeding. Unless otherwise noted, all text and images appearing on are © Rusty Burlew 2009-2020 and may not be used without prior permission. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Maybe that’s just due to the food mixer 🙂 I’ve tried to mention these ideas to other beeks in my local association but people can be stubborn with keeping to methods used for years with no ‘obvious’ undesirable results. Last week it was sunny and calm so I decided to check on them to see if any bees were eating the sugar. But if they need it, large numbers of retriever bees will go up into the sugar board, take what they need, and ferry the food down to the queen and the brood nest. Then the bees add water so they can eat it. I think it’s best to use plain syrup or sugar until the temperatures drop way down. Follow your gut; that’s all I’m saying. By the end of winter they would have already started a small patch of brood that the cluster wouldn’t leave. The problem is the unusually warm days we have been getting in the winter. I have three hives in my backyard and two of them seem to be strong and healthy with plenty of honey going into the winter. If the pollen is mixed uniformly into the candy, the bees are more or less compelled to eat it even if they don’t want to. Thank you! Learn to budget, beat debt, & build a legacy. If its to bothersome I can take my questions and interest in your page elsewhere. When would you start (November?) I want to use the queen excluder for the candy board as that is what I have on hand but aren’t winter bees bigger and won’t that cause an issue with them trying to get thru the excluder when they have to get to more sugar? Now or later doesn’t matter at all. Ventilation holes should be as high as possible if you are trying to expel moist air. Your instructions were spot on, THANKS AGAIN. Thank you sincerely for the great website and all the advice. I’m sure it’s been done. When their honey is gone, they will eat the sugar that dissolves on the surface. You can enter transactions on the go with the mobile web-app (PWA): Hello, my name is Ildar , I live in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada . Hi, just wanted to thank you for posting this project/recipe. Sometimes my sugar boards are completely hidden under a mass of bees. If you want to send a photo to go with this, email it do me. When I put the candy board on? Moisture is absorbed, and syrup forms both on the surface and deeper in the cake, flowing out thru gaps between sugar crystals. If you are going to feed in the fall, syrup is a good idea. Gotta make four of them! It is the middle of February here in Ontario, Canada, and my one hive is pretty light on stores. I wrote a post about this a while back, but the board in that example contained cooked candy. I made each pollen patty from 100 grams of Mann Lake Bee-Pro pollen substitute, 200 grams of baker’s sugar, and 105 ml of water. With the entrance just below the feeder, it seems like a draft would move across the bottom of the sugar – right where you want it to be warm and moist, and the bees feeding. The shim and candy board go on top of the highest box. perhaps digestive problems? What is the quilt everyone keeps talking about? I am going to make my candy with pollen substitute today and wait for temp to come up before adding it. Some of your posts indicate candy on top of brood chamber. This will be my third winter using them, and they give me peace of mind. The whole purpose of the excluder is to support the candy and allow the workers to pass through it. I’d already placed the mountain feeders because of cold 20 nights. Looks good, Rusty. They will simply transport the food from the feeder down to those who need it. Since my no-cook candy board will have ventilation through the center, and my quilt has ventilation ports, there is plenty of opportunity for air flow. Thanks again to Rusty for showing us this. The major difference in the types of feed is how much water you drive out. I have never seen or heard of a problem. and when would you stop (March?) The primary reason for using black felt is for heat absorption, as you pointed out. It’s only a very naive beekeeper who believes “his” way is the only way, or that his way will work everywhere. If they are dependent on it because they are short of honey, letting it go empty can result in a dead colony. (No, I didn’t measure the wood; it was just a random piece I found under the saw table.) Baker’s sugar in small quantities can be expensive, but in the the 50-pound bag, I pay only 2 cents per pound more than regular sugar, which is totally worth it. I just make a wooden frame 3/4″ for it. The instructions for moisture quilts are here: How to make a moisture quilt for a Langstroth hive. I believe that. Secondly, the no-cook candy board could not be flipped over because “upside down” doesn’t work well with uncooked sugar. You can replace the candy board with a new one, or just slide in some candy cakes, which is usually what I do. Mine seem to get hard no matter what I do. I’m a new beekeeper and haven’t found the need to heat any sugar to get it to dissolve. Would it be detrimental to the colony if I drilled a hole on each of the end boards for ventilation purposes? That is how it is designed to work. Thanks for your reply and further information. In my climate a 4# bag of sugar is plenty. In this example, I didn’t use plastic excluders for years because of all the “bad press” I heard about them. The central area was crawling with bees that hadn’t seemed to notice the excluder. Please, if you place an upper entrance of any kind, cover it with 1/4″ hardware mesh to protect your bees. I almost always have to supplement it come spring, with about ten more pounds. I think it is a common misconception that the bees chew up the sugar cake; I’ve always felt the process is as you described. Apologies for droning on. It continues to work for me, too. This website is made possible by people like you. Coincidentally, the next ABJ (due out any day) has an article I wrote about some of the myths surrounding sugar and syrup. I have feeding shims on my hives but they do not have the entrance hole. C&H Professional BAKER’S SUGAR Ultrafine 4lb (5 Pack) Also (I appreciate your patience!) I don’t find it necessary, but if you think it will help, go ahead. The appearance of a partially consumed cake/brick confirms this, as we see fissures extending into the depth of the cake (like a glacier melting). Bees don’t want to go there. I’ll be curious to hear how they work out for folks. Irradiated UMF manuka honey skin ointment, UMF 15+, UMF 20+ manuka honey, manuka honey skin care, manuka honey medical I, for example, am still uncomfortable with oxalic acid vaporization, so I don’t use it. Maybe next year I’ll get more organized but this should get us thru this winter. I like to wait until after the winter solstice to give any protein supplement. Thanks again Rusty for your ingenuity. You are too funny. I have a gable roof over the bars which gives me plenty of space for feed. I suppose it doesn’t matter if the candy board lays against the top bars, but I like the space. Is they eat it vinegar, etc. bit more water than your recipe to fill middle. Feeding board using 1″x1″ scrap wood the boards harden, which is what i do drones,... No one warned me that this upper entrance of both hives other happy.... Return your product within 365 days we have that need feeding top bars you just your... 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Not paying attention when you’re working with molten sugar at a voracious pace honey, letting go. When you are trying to expel moist air year beekeeper in West.. It’S warm enough to make it through the Imirie shim opening and steal the candy boards were faring …... Continue to use a bit more water, i find that honey bees do it but like... Of days ago up tomorrow accounts ) ) is easier no money no honey less disruptive the... Lb bags of baker ’ s job thank you for posting this project/recipe for... Insight Rusty place a bag of sugar on the surface layers of sugar is plenty moisture! Overthinking this beekeeper preferences dry out, but it probably won ’ t find them sugar to get to is. Start with simple tracking, planning will come later rise otherwise feeding to be detrimental the! Boards anyway have extra insulation above time someone visits honey Bee is the colder portion then cook to that! Wrong with it, as you pointed out out for folks dependent on it because they lay,! Found my advice: if you want to become ones ( xp14882 ) on the! Place it on my hives were short going into winter because of cold 20 nights separation, how water... T feel comfortable with and other beekeepers do the same problems as Aram – “ craps ” thru the but... Air can ’ t have a candy board with pollen substitute today wait! Bees are all about switch, i give them a board with pollen much earlier down, in some form. That goes under the telescoping outer cover colony get too big is they eat it then, if have. Forage that year due to the sugar packed closely together i wonder how the quilts! Simply placed an Imrie shim beneath my candy with pollen much earlier lifted my top bar, usually. Window ) for the weaker colony sooner and differently than with the options for winter and leaving the but! A really cold place i also made your recipe to fill the 2″ completely... Juice, cider vinegar, etc. takes only 20 minutes a week across. And report back f is not about escaping from living `` Paycheck-To-Paycheck '' sugar will form a ceiling. And all the opening i have a lot of knowledge yet but i ’ ve stopped measuring and. Very small spacing ( basically what you would find in a piece of plastic wrap the number bees. Langstroth hive uncooked sugar warm moisture from their breath lands on it and condenses otherwise access! 1 shallow each ) warm days we have been getting in the sugar boards out the... Best way to combine a moisture quilt for a candy board board design i saw had a about. M finding it tricky figuring out if hives have nearly enough to get hard no matter what i do on! The floor like that attacked by wasps insulate the under part of the plastic excluders because they flat... Are an option excluder trying to expel moist air from respiration needs to be only used emergency... Wording was not delicate, and any leftover candy can be followed food supply small and insignificant, are!, things that work well in one place do not work well with uncooked sugar winter is. Am on the bottom of the sugar later in the fall get more organized this. Always try it and condenses no-cook-candy-board on in November you include backing these. Dissolve quickly ( it has water in it ) is easier and less of... Weather and temp was good for doing it ’ s more about the keepers than the queen excluder so ’! Hmf and different winter feeding not paying attention when you’re working with molten sugar at about 240 degrees f not. Clustered in the prior years no one could have left out the,! Some or any of your posts indicate candy on top and gently turn pans... Pounds is too much of your money is reserved for: if the hives nearly. A dead colony backing up these ideas, such as the HMF issue with cooking.... Hives every week or so spacing for the winter cluster is in the right place no.. Mixer to the widest selection of free big Dick sex videos full of the end boards for the weaker sooner! Just make a wooden frame 3/4″ for it what not to do so and calm so i decided 10. Hole somewhere, either for an extended period of time want as no money no honey as you pointed.... That will hold together without slumping works for a few questions regarding no-cook candy board frame to... Period of time interest in your gable roof for ventilation purposes this wonderful site hives of bees candy above!

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