November 2014 - Fear NO Honey Bee

Late Nov Bee’s still bringing in pollen

Ok, this is a quick update.  It’s late November 30 2014, and the honey bee’s are still bringing in pollen.  I am quite amazed, as we have had several days of hard freeze’s this month.  I’m not sure what would be producing some pollen this late in the year, but the girls found it and are bringing it in steadily.   This next picture was taken back on November 10, 2014.  You can see different shades of pollen.  From red, orange  and light yellow....

Candy Board Installation

Here we are doing candy board installations. We did this November 11, 2014. The weather was changing quickly. We went from high’s in the 50°F’s (12°C) to high of 35°F (1°C) and low’s down to 8°F (-13°C). While we were doing the board installation, we also did a visual inspection. Basically checking the frames for honey, amount of bee’s, etc.. without removing the frames. I wanted the heat loss to be minimal and a little disruption to the bee’s at this point of the year as possible. The candy board frame it’s self has a 1/2″ hole drilled in one end. This allows for an upper entrance for the bee’s. It also allows for upper air flow thus reducing the amount of condensation inside the hive. As to the actual candy making process and recipe, see our article Making Hard Sugar Candy – Winter feeding  ...

Making Hard Sugar Candy – Winter feeding

Let’s talk about making hard sugar candy feeding your bee’s in winter. There are many way’s to do this and I will only cover a couple. I prefer to use the cold method, which does not entail boiling of sugar and water. It is your choice as to which recipe and method you follow and discussion of pro’s and con’s of each is not part of this. What we do know is that this does 2 things. The bee’s area and cluster is warm.  This warm air then hits cold outside air and causes a bit of condensation.  Bee’s also exhale which causes condensation.  This condensation forms on the lid and will drip back down on the bee’s then causing them to be chilled and possibly die. If the bee’s did not put up enough honey (or you harvested too much) then they could starve.  This provides emergency food for them to eat.  Some have noticed that even if they have honey stored, they take the sugar and eat it first possibly to allow the spring bee’s and brood to have access to natural honey. So these are the reasons I prefer to put the candy boards on.  I start with a frame that is the dimensions of your hive body.  Whether that is 8 frame, 10 frame, 5 frame nuc or even my Warre hive.  The sides can be 1.5″ (3.81cm) or larger.  I prefer about 1.75 – 2″. I am currently trying several recipes.  The first is a method that my club uses.  Which is Every 5# of sugar you need 6oz of water.  1tsp of HBH per...