Colony condition and bee behaviour in honey bees (Apis mellifera) housed in wooden or polystyrene hives and fed 'bee cake' or syrup
A Dodologlu, C Dulger and F Genc
3 to 8
In this paper we examine the interacting effects of two Langstroth hive designs (wood or polystyrene) and two feeding regimens (sucrose syrup or 'bee cake') on selected performance characters of honey bee (Apis mellifera) colonies in Turkey. Colonies housed in wooden hives achieved superior performance over polystyrene hives as measured by overwintering colony survival, winter population loss, brood area, number of frames of bees and low defensiveness. Across both hive designs, brood area was significantly increased in colonies that received supplementary feeding regardless of feeding method. In polystyrene hives, colony weight gain during the nectar flow was significantly higher in colonies receiving supplementary feeding regardless of feeding method. Generally, feeding colonies with sugar syrup in autumn and with bee cake and syrup in early spring provided optimum colony buildup for the production season.