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General Q&A, Bee chat and only Bee chat please
 #8792  by Chrisbarlow
 07 Sep 2020, 19:07
NigelP wrote:
06 Sep 2020, 17:35
Tend to agree Chris...If everything is okay...I won't be inspecting some of mine until next year. Probably find an odd supersedure queen appearing from nowhere next spring. But I will be i inspecting hives where I want to know whats going on....some recently introduced queens, a late mating, possible drone layer to throw out.....obviously only when the weather is good..
Hardest bit for me now is getting bees back from the heather moors, then start varroa treatments and make sure they have enough stores to get through winter. Got strange looks at B&M with 100 bags of sugar in trolley.....
Costco is £10.99 for 25kg ... Obviously, one has to be close-ish
 #8796  by NigelP
 08 Sep 2020, 08:12
Chrisbarlow wrote:
07 Sep 2020, 19:07


Costco is £10.99 for 25kg ... Obviously, one has to be close-ish
Good price for sugar Chris but travel to Ciostsco Leeds would cost more that I would save. I thought B&M was 50p but it was 59p.....Lidl is 64p.
 #8799  by Chrisbarlow
 08 Sep 2020, 12:47
Crikey, yup, I see your point Nigel
 #8800  by NigelP
 08 Sep 2020, 15:42
Just used 75kg of sugar to make up thick syrup with my sump mixer. It takes time but the pump does all the work.
I weighed a few Jerry cans and conservatively estimate at least 118kg in total weight, making it at (59p/kg for the sugar) 37.5p per kg in costs, total costs £44.25p. This is about 1/3 the quantity I expect to use for feeding this winter.

Cheapest I can an equivalent quantity of Invert is £189.90, for 114kg (free carriage) or £1.66/kg (Simon the Beekeeper).
Making invert approx 4.5x more expensive... although on it's plus side it's a lot less hassle....and you probably don't need as much as syrup....
Think I'll be sticking to my sump pump for a few more years....total costs around £130 for sugar vs £500+ for invert....
 #8802  by Patrick
 09 Sep 2020, 16:14
Steve 1972 wrote:Some say too early to feed.. i say feed..i mixed 45L of 2:1 last week and two thirds have gone..if i did not feed syrup two big colonies would be history..
You are spot on Steve. There is not a month in the year you “shouldn’t feed” if they need it. Starving bees can happen for a number of reasons, particularly if the weather is or has been poor for a duration. A lot of times it is also related to what a beekeeper has done or not done.

If the blessed things are really light - feed. If not sure whether to treat for varroa or feed starving bees - feed. They maysuffer from varroa but without food they willstarve. As has been said before the varying geography of weather, changing climate and local flows available make national calendars regarding feeding no better than indicative.

If we over feed a bit, really so what? They simply turn early feed into more bees? Great. Nice big overwintering cluster. They may congest the brood nest - really? Use bigger brood chambers or leave on a super if it’s really an issue. My bees generally do fine with three gallons of heavy syrup a hive. What they have stored as honey already is a bonus - I don’t bother to deduct it.

I never understand trying to feed the bare minimum. Honestly, the cost in bought sugar of winter feed per hive is the retail value of one or two jars of honey. In a mild autumn, after an early feed a second top up may even be worthwhile.
 #8816  by NigelP
 10 Sep 2020, 15:59
By this time of September in a "normal" year, the purple heather flowers are turning white/brown and it's time to clear the supers and bring the hives back.
Got out of to the truck today and WOW the aroma of heather flowers was stunning and the heather is nowhere near finished. Watched a dozen or so honey bees working it. Checked hives and they are still bringing wet nectar in. With temps forecast up to mid 20's this coming week ....no brainier up there they will stay. There is hope for a crop yet.
This year has the promise of being the latest we have ever stayed on the moors.
Last year they were all brought back on the 5th of September due to a dreadful forecast ahead.
 #8822  by Steve 1972
 10 Sep 2020, 18:15
Today i checked the feeders on the four nucs that are in full brood boxes and topped them up with 2:1 Thymol syrup..i added Apitraz five days ago so i checked the inspection trays also...each colony has dropped varroa in the hundreds..the treatment could not have been timed better as i fear the nucs would have been weakened for winter if i left it any longer..the full colonies at my Alnwick Apiary will get there treatment this weekend..
 #8873  by Chrisbarlow
 13 Sep 2020, 19:39
Extracting .. got some buckwheat honey again this year ,so I am over the moon about that, however it's not as pure as some I got a few years back , it certainly not as black more golden brown but still tastes extremely strong. The last batch proved extremely popular.
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