Pollen, Pollen Substitute, and Pollen Patties are fed if spring is chilly and the natural pollen flows are delayed or interrupted. We also feed bees pollen if we want to encourage brood production just prior to the spring flow.
However, feeding pollen can be counterproductive to hive health. When you feed pollen, brood rearing ramps up. The bees need to feed brood and keep it warm, at about 90 degrees F. This puts a strain on honey reserves. And if outside temps drop, the bees may not be able to cover the brood and keep it warm. The result? Chilled (dead) brood or a starved hive that's burned through its resources.
When we do feed pollen, we place global patties directly above the brood. If they are away from the brood the bees do not use them very effectively. We also sell MegaBee dry mix which you can feed as is or mix with syrup to create a sticky dough-like consistency.
Making Sugar Syrup Bee Feed: For spring feeding create a 1:1 syrup using 1 pound water to 1 pound sugar. For fall feeding make a 2:1 syrup using 2 pounds sugar per pound of water. Water must be very hot to dissolve sugar! We do not feed sugar syrup during cold weather when bees are not able to take cleansing flights.
Honey-B-Healthy is an essential oil preparation. When added to sugar syrup, it produces rapid build-up and boosts the bee's immune system. It also helps prevent mold in the feeders.
Winter Patties are an excellent emergency bee feed for colonies in late winter. They contain a relatively low protein level which will not stimulate brood rearing. This bee feed will provide necessary carbohydrates to keep colonies from starving.