Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Honey Bee Nutrition
To address the nutrition needs of honey bees, some beekeepers are adopting more frequent supplemental feeding. Traditional patterns of feeding bees involved fall feeding of a heavy sugar syrup to build up winter stores and spring feeding of a thinner sugar syrup to stimulate nectar gathering. To meet nutritional requirements, some beekeepers are adding feedings of pollen substitutes and sugar syrup at various times of the year. Feeding during periods of dearth is sometimes required to keep queen bees of certain stocks from stopping brood production. This occurs with Russian bees and some of the other stocks of eastern European origin. Stopping brood production evolved as a reproductive strategy for survival in harsh climates. Today’s picture shows honey bees chewing pollen substitute.