I added a hive top feeder to Hive #2 today. I also checked the hive top feeder on Hive #1 which has had a feeder installed for about a week now with about 6 litres of syrup in one side. That feeder may have had a slight leak. I noticed a clump of bees and wasps hanging around one spot between the inner cover and the feeder for a couple days. I’d brush them away and they’d fly back to the exact spot immediately. Here’s what it looked like:
Then today as I was about to check the hive — this is a completely different topic — I noticed these dead bees and wasps outside the bottom entrance:
I’m not worried about it. I’m not worried about any of it anymore. It’s not worth the worry.
I could worry about all these drowned bees in the hive top feeder on Hive #1. But I’m not. Next spring, I’ll just add some straw on top so they don’t drown as much. Anyway, there’s still at least 2 litres of syrup in the feeder. I think the bees in Hive #1 are done with taking syrup for the year.
This is Hive #2 on the left. The photo shows two double frame feeders installed over the inner cover. The photo on the right shows the bees clustered around the hole in the inner cover after I removed the frame feeders.
These photos show me filling the hive top feeder, which sits on top of the inner cover like a shallow super. You can see how thick the syrup is. 2 parts sugar. 1 part water.
This final photo shows one half of the feeder filled to the brim. The other half has some syrup and dead bees in it. It’s what was left over from the frame feeders. The bees get to the syrup by crawling up the space in the middle of the feeder, and then sip on the edge of either reservoir. Like dogs. Many of them drown, but that’s the way it goes. The top cover seals the top of the feeder and that’s it. The feeder holds about 16 litres of syrup. But I only had about 8 litres for this feeder. I’m all out of sugar. I’ll feed them like this until they stop taking feed, probably before the end of October.
I noticed condensation building up under the top covers of both hives. Tomorrow, if the sky doesn’t fall on me, I’ll build and install some insulated covers.
PHOTOS NOTE (OCTOBER 2015): The photos in this post may not display properly because they were uploaded through Google’s Picasa online photo album service, a service I no longer use because certain updates create more work for me instead of streamlining the process. I will eventually replace the photos with ones hosted on the Mud Songs server. This note will disappear when (or if) that happens.