Do bees eat honey


Beekeepers who have just started working at the apiary are interested in what the bees eat at different times of the year and day. This is important to know, as these insects are suppliers of a useful and well-loved product - honey.

What do bees like

The diet of buzzing insects is quite diverse. They can eat pollen, nectar, perga, and their own honey. The main food supply of insects from spring to autumn is honey plants.

Bees collect pollen and nectar:

  • from acacia, linden, buckwheat, alder and hazel;
  • from apple, pear, cherry, bird cherry and other flowering trees and shrubs;
  • from sunflower, dandelions, clover, lupine, rape.

Many cultures are planted specifically next to the apiary, given the timing of flowering.

After collecting the pollen, the bee wets it with its own saliva. Then, arriving at the hive, she puts the collected product in a certain cell comb. It begins the process of fermentation, which results in the formation of perga, consisting mainly of proteins.

Do bees eat their honey

The question whether the bee colony feeds on its own product can be answered unequivocally - yes. To overcome the great distances to which worker bees go in search of honey plants, they need an enhanced diet. That is why insects eat immediately for several days. Hungry bees just die during the flight.

What is the protein feed for the bee family

Thanks to protein food, bees successfully develop, due to this, spring produces good brood. Protein is found in perge, pollen and substitutes that are fed to the bee family in late autumn and winter.

But sometimes perga until the end of wintering is not enough, and, therefore, protein starvation can occur. Insect to compensate for the lack of this substance give cow's milk. The protein of this natural product is easily digested by bees.

In the early spring, while there are no flowering plants, the worker bees feed the larvae with perga. If this substance is not enough, the development of the bee colony is suspended, the uterus does not lay eggs.

Beekeepers must always leave a frame with pergea before transferring hives for winter maintenance. If the bees lack this food, they have to use protein substitutes. This is especially important when there are few flowering plants and the weather is rainy.

There are a lot of options for preparing protein substitutes for feeding bees; each of them has its own advantages and disadvantages.

Honey, water, pollen

It is best to use natural substitutes, which include:

  • honey;
  • water;
  • last year's pollen.

The composition of the substitute is:

  1. Mix 200 g of bee product, 1 kg of dry pollen, 150 ml of water.
  2. This mixture is laid out on the frame and covered with canvas.
  3. From time to time the amount of food replenish.

Powdered milk

If there is no perga, the substitute is made from powdered milk. Although the quality of this composition is not as effective as perga, it can be used so that the bee family does not die from protein hunger. Prepare feeding from:

  • 800 ml of water;
  • 1 kg of granulated sugar;
  • 200 g of powdered milk.

Preparing food for buzzing insects is easy:

  1. Boil water, add sugar, stir until it is completely dissolved.
  2. Introduce powdered milk, stir to avoid lumps.
Attention! This food is given in small quantities, as milk quickly sours.

What do bees eat in winter

The main food of bees in the winter is honey. Autumn necessarily leave the sealed frame in the hive. This honey, suitable for winter nutrition, should be dark. In one frame should be at least 2.5 kg of quality product.

In addition to honey, bees need water. But in the winter drinking bowls can not be put, insects will use condensate that settles on the walls of the hive. In the winter in any case is not recommended to close tightly letok. If there is a shortage of moisture, worker bees will extract it outside the house.

Important! If there is not enough moisture in winter, the bee goiter will be clogged with honey.

If summer was dry and autumn was rainy, then insects do not have time to prepare a sufficient amount of food for the winter or it will turn out to be of poor quality (crystallizes quickly).

In such a situation, you need to think about timely feeding a bee colony. Food in this case can serve:

  • old honey;
  • sugar syrup;
  • sweet fudge;
  • other nutritious top dressings.

Syrup as food is given during the week, for each hive - up to 1.5 tbsp. every evening.

What eats bee

Throughout her life, the bee-woman feeds on royal jelly, and uses honey and pollen very rarely. Milk contains all the necessary nutrients to maintain tone and fertilization. Other food will not allow the uterus to lay the right amount of eggs.

What bees feed their babies

The larvae of the larvae just released from the eggs are very small but voracious. In the first 6 days of life, one individual is able to eat 200 mg of food. Larvae's diet depends on status.

Future drones and worker bees feed on bee milk only for a few days. In the future, their food will be honey, water and perga. For small bees care for "nanny." For each larva, they fly up to 1300 times a day. The larva itself grows 10,000 times in size. On day 6, the cells are sealed with wax and pollen, where the future bee will grow until February.

What happens when the bees do not have enough food and water

If there is enough food and water in the hive, the bees behave calmly. Check it out is simple: just hit the house, and then put an ear to it. If the bees fall silent, then everything is in order.

With unfriendly noise, as well as with sounds resembling a moan, it can be determined that there is no uterus in the family. In such a beehive, the bees can be blocked, until the spring there will be few in it.

Strong bee noise - a signal to feed. In order not to miss the right moment, the hives after the New Year should be checked 2-3 times a month. By this time brood begins in the hives, the temperature inside the house rises to +34 degrees.

In addition to conventional dressings, you can make a cake of powdered sugar and pollen. They love sweet dough in bee colonies. To do this, take honey (1 kg), heat it in a water bath to 40-45 degrees and mix with powdered sugar (4 kg). Such food is very popular with bees. But before folding into the hives, the dough is mixed with water: 5 liters of liquid is added per 5 kg.

The food is laid out in sacks, they make small punctures and they are removed in the upper part of the hive.

What do beekeepers

Bees need food and water in any season. In the spring, summer, and autumn, at each apiary, drinkers are made into which pure water is poured. Otherwise, insects will begin to drink from dubious puddles and may bring disease into the hive. Or they will begin to look for moisture far from hives, at a time when you need to fly for nectar and pollen.

As a rule, drinkers are equipped with fresh and salt water (1 g of salt is required per 1 liter of water). Insects themselves will figure out what drinker to fly.

The number of drinkers will depend on the hives installed, so that the bees can get drunk at any time. Water should be changed regularly, before changing the tank, thoroughly washed.

Comment! You can refuse watering only when there is a stream or river near the apiary.

Food bees need to organize not only in winter and autumn, but at any time. In autumn, winter and early spring, there are no flowering plants and the family is weakened after wintering.

Composed mixture is poured into the feeders. Food insects give the evening. It is necessary to feed the inhabitants of the hives in the summer when the flowering plants are not enough due to the strong heat.

The main nutrition of bees is natural honey, since it contains enough vitamins and nutrients, micro and macro elements necessary for the life of bees and for obtaining young brood.

In winter, you need to monitor the condition of the bees, feed them, so that by spring the family will remain strong and efficient. Check frames with honey. If it crystallizes, it must be urgently changed. If there is old honey, then it is melted or various feedings prepared on its basis.

Attention! Honey can be replaced with sugar syrup, but it should be understood that there are not enough beneficial substances in its composition.


We need to know what the bees eat at different times of the year, if there is a desire to start an apiary. Only with proper organization of life of beneficial insects can we hope to receive a good bribe. Natural honey is a healthy and tasty product that is in demand.

The recipe for sweet fudge for feeding bees in the winter: