With the arrival of spring, all families require feeding. This is necessary to strengthen the health of the worker bee before the onset of the active period of honey collection, high productivity of the queen. Correctly prepared bee syrup will restore strength to all families in the apiary and ensure high productivity in the coming period of honey harvest.
Components of sugar syrup for bees
Overwintered workers need high-quality feeding. A sweet treat in the form of a syrup for feeding bees will be a profitable alternative to the nectar that is absent in the early spring days. Malnutrition makes the bees anxious. This negatively affects the growth of the offspring and future collection rates.
In addition, an insufficiently fed bee in the spring is susceptible to many diseases due to the fact that the body has a weakened immune system. Often this situation leads to the death of the whole family. Simple sugar syrup for bees made from water and sugar is not a complete complementary food. Its preparation requires compliance with some nuances. The composition of the complementary food, the concentration of useful additives and its consistency are especially important. In winter, thicker baits are prepared.
Groundbait is necessary at any time of the year. For each period, it has a different density. It is necessary to feed the bees in spring and summer with more liquid baits. It is prepared only from sugar and water, there should not be any substitutes, all kinds of fortified supplements.
Proportions of sugar bee feed
Preparing a treat yourself is not difficult. The standard recipe is a kilogram of sugar for one and a half liters of water. But in spring the ratio is different. The presented table for the preparation of sugar syrup for bees will help you better navigate.
- thick – 2 parts sugar to one part water (67%);
- medium – 1: 1 (50%);
- liquid – 1: 2 (30%).
Liquid provokes the emergence of bees, which threatens their death in cold weather. Supplements in the form of pollen or pollen substitutes cause diarrhea.
The best feeding, natural syrup for bees in spring, of course, is honey. In order for sugar feeding to become a complete complementary food, it is worth preparing an inverted syrup. It differs from the usual one in that organic acids are used during cooking. Due to this, sucrose is broken down into fructose and glucose. To do this, use citric, tartaric or acetic acid. But beekeepers have been debating this method for many years. In any case, the acids must be used with caution.
How to make syrup
Cooking sugar top dressing requires observance of some important points.
- Use clean dishes that are not liable to oxidize. It can be enameled pots, buckets.
- Sugar is chosen pure, natural, not subject to refining, does not contain various additives.
- The entire volume of sugar is poured into a container and poured with the required amount of boiling water. Mix everything thoroughly until the sugar is completely dissolved.
- Cool the finished product. The temperature should be close to that of fresh milk.
- Fill feeders, honeycombs with a delicacy.
Boiling syrup for bees is strictly prohibited. Even a small part of burnt sugar can provoke the death of a family.
A large number is contraindicated in a weak family. It is important that dosages are followed.
To prepare liquid sugar syrup for feeding bees, you will need:
- for the preparation of one liter of top dressing – 0,6 sugar and the same amount of water;
- 5 liters of sweet food will be obtained from 3 kg of sugar and 3 liters of water;
- To get 10 liters of liquid treats, you need 6 kilograms of sugar and 6 liters of water.
The resulting top dressing is given after the worker bee has made the first flight.
Top dressing with a thick delicacy is carried out in the cold season. It is important that this is done in the winter and continues until the first flyby. This guarantees good egg production by the uterus. It is not difficult to prepare a thick one, observing the recommendations and proportions presented:
- for 1 liter – 0,6 water and 8 kg. Sahara;
- for 5 liters, you need to take 4 kg. sugar and 2,7 liters of water;
- 10 liters can be prepared from 8 kg of sugar and 5,5 liters of water.
The feed should have a thick, transparent consistency. Ready top dressing can be stored for no more than a day. In warm conditions, top dressing loses its value. A change in color indicates that the fermentation process has begun. Such feeding is fatal to the bee.
Caring, practical beekeepers try to leave some of the honey in the hives. Without feeding, the bees will simply die. If there is no honey in the hives, then you should adhere to a certain norm for feeding the bees in the spring with sugar syrup. The above table should be in the arsenal of every beekeeper.
- Thick are offered to their wards even before the first flight. This will provide adequate nutrition and provoke the uterus to lay eggs.
- Liquid is used for the development of a bee colony in early spring after the first flights.
Preparation of invertase
The inversion process is carried out in several ways.
- Classic invert food is prepared from sugar, water according to the expected proportion with the addition of food acids (acetic, citric, tartaric). Lawn is not entirely good for bees, as it contains a large portion of carbohydrates.
- Natural invertase is a beekeeping product and is produced by the bees themselves. It is a high quality food containing nutritional and fortified components, which is used by families for their own feeding.
- Industrial invertase. Produced by enterprises on the basis of fungi, yeast. Experienced beekeepers rarely use it, since the product does not contain honey. Such feeding is necessary in order to increase the immunity reduced during the winter and future productivity.
To prepare such a top dressing, you will need 6 liters. ready-made feed, in which citric acid was previously added in an amount of 14 g. The process is slightly different from the usual cooking.
- Bring 6 liters of water to a boil.
- Reduce fire to the minimum possible. Add 7 kg. sugar, stirring constantly. Make sure that the sugar does not burn.
- Introduce the entire norm of citric acid and simmer with constant stirring for at least an hour.
In the process of simmering on low heat, the sugar in the feed is inverted into glucose and fructose. After the temperature of the syrup is no more than 39 degrees, you can enter the feed into the feeders and combs.
This mixture does not require cooking, but it is better to cook with strict adherence to the proportions:
- water – 2 liters;
- 7,2 kilograms of sugar;
- 750 grams of natural honey;
- 2,4 gr. citric or dry acetic acid.
Prepared in one bowl, where all the ingredients are found and filled with warm water (35-40 degrees). Mix everything thoroughly. After that, the solution is kept warm (up to 35 degrees) for 5 days. The syrup must be mixed twice a day, in the morning and in the evening. After five days, you can refill the troughs.
Based on industrial invertase
Industrial invertase is purchased from beekeeping shops. For example, it can be the drug “Pchelovit”. Making syrup is quite simple, you will need:
- 5 liters of water;
- 5 kilogram of sugar;
- 2 gr. industrial invertase.
The syrup is prepared in the usual way, dilute the sugar with boiling water. After the temperature drops to 40 degrees, add the required amount of industrial invertase and mix thoroughly. The prepared solution is kept at room temperature for two days, stirring constantly. This time is sufficient for fermentation. But it is better if it is transferred to cold conditions in order to exclude fermentation. This top dressing will come in handy in March or winter.
How to distribute
Beekeepers use several feeding methods.
- The easiest way is to fill special feeders, which are located above the nests.
- If the syrup is liquid, it is poured into a jar. Close the neck with several layers of gauze. Place the neck down on a container (saucer, feeder). It is important to secure the jar to prevent it from overturning.
- Fill a plastic bag with syrup. Tie after removing air. The feeding bags are placed on the upper frames in several places. Make a puncture with a sewing needle in several places.
Many beekeepers prefer to add additives to the syrup in order to increase the bees’ immunity and reproductive ability. Usually a small amount (1-2 drops / 1 liter of syrup) of fir oil is injected.
Why don’t bees take syrup
Syrup made with love, carefully filled feeders and combs. But the beekeeper notices that the bees refuse treats and do not take additional food. There can be several explanations for this phenomenon:
- the syrup temperature is below 10 degrees;
- the syrup contains feeding that is unpleasant for the bee;
- the top dressing has deteriorated.
These are important points, since low-quality syrup or its absence can lead to the death of a family.
Experienced beekeepers provide beginners with useful advice to preserve and increase their bee colonies.
- It is necessary to feed the bees only with fresh, high-quality syrup, which is made from natural beet sugar. Cane sugar is not prohibited, but you should only choose it from a reliable manufacturer. Making the mistake of choosing sugar can lead to the death of families.
- If you overdo it with additives (fir oil, herbal decoctions), then the bees can refuse the syrup or leave the hive.
- Late feeding threatens with early closure of the combs.
- The syrup offered to bees early will be taken only by old bees who took part in last year’s honey harvest. Youngsters will remain hungry, which leads to their death.
Sugar syrup is a great alternative to honey that helps preserve the natural product. But if such feeding is carried out constantly, then it threatens to receive low-quality sugar honey, loss of immunity and the vitality of the family. In the end, such actions lead to the fact that the family can leave the hive or simply die.