As winter approaches, honeybees face a significant challenge in finding food. During this season, bees need a stable source of food to survive the colder months. A candy board is an excellent solution for beekeepers to provide their bees with a reliable food source. In this article, we will guide you on how to make a candy board for bees.
A candy board is a feeding board that beekeepers use to provide their bees with a food source during winter. Candy boards are easy to make and offer a stable food source for bees, ensuring their survival during the colder months.
Before making a candy board, it’s important to gather all the necessary materials. You will need:
1. Wooden Boards
You will need a wooden board that is the same size as your beehive. A thickness of 1.5 inches is ideal, as it provides enough insulation for the bees.
Granulated white sugar is the best option for making a candy board. Avoid using brown sugar, as it contains impurities that can be harmful to bees.
You will need water to dissolve the sugar and make the candy mixture. Using filtered or distilled water is recommended, as it is free from impurities.
4. Candy Thermometer
A candy thermometer is essential to ensure that the candy mixture is heated to the correct temperature.
5. Non-Stick Cooking Spray
You will need non-stick cooking spray to coat the candy board’s surface, preventing the candy mixture from sticking to the board.
6. Hardware Cloth
Hardware cloth is used to create a barrier between the bees and the candy mixture. It also helps to provide ventilation to prevent moisture buildup.
Once you have gathered all the necessary materials, it’s time to move on to the next step.
Making a candy board for bees can seem daunting, but it’s relatively simple. Follow these step-by-step instructions to make your candy board.
Creating the Candy Mixture
- In a large pot, mix four parts sugar with one part water.
- Heat the mixture on medium heat, stirring constantly until the sugar is completely dissolved.
- Once the sugar has dissolved, insert a candy thermometer into the mixture and continue heating until it reaches 235-240°F.
- Once the mixture has reached the desired temperature, remove it from the heat and let it cool for a few minutes.
Preparing the Candy Board
- While the candy mixture is cooling, prepare the candy board by coating its surface with non-stick cooking spray.
- Cut a piece of hardware cloth to the same size as the candy board and place it on top of the candy board.
- Pour the candy mixture onto the hardware cloth-covered candy board.
- Allow the candy mixture to cool and harden completely.
- Once the candy has hardened, use a knife to score the surface of the candy board into small squares. This will make it easier for bees to access the candy.
Now that you know how to make a candy board for bees, it’s essential to know where to place it and how to maintain it. Keep reading to find out.
Step-by-Step Instructions (Continued)
Installing the Candy Board
- Once the candy board has hardened, place it on top of the beehive frames.
- Ensure that the candy board is level and stable, and that the bees can access the candy squares.
- Cover the candy board with an inner cover or an empty hive body.
- Add a top cover to protect the hive from the elements.
Placement and Maintenance
- Place the candy board in a location that is easily accessible to the bees but protected from the wind and other elements.
- Check the candy board regularly to ensure that the bees have access to the candy squares.
- Refill the candy board as necessary throughout the winter months.
- Remove the candy board in the spring once the bees have access to natural food sources.
Advantages of Using a Candy Board
Candy boards offer several advantages to beekeepers and their bees. Here are some of the benefits of using a candy board:
Provides a reliable food source: Candy boards provide bees with a stable food source during the colder months, ensuring their survival.
Easy to make: Candy boards are easy to make and require minimal equipment.
Cost-effective: Making a candy board is more cost-effective than purchasing pre-made feeding boards.
Prevents starvation: Bees can quickly starve during the winter months. A candy board ensures that bees have access to food when natural food sources are scarce.
Reduces stress on bees: By providing bees with a stable food source, candy boards reduce stress on bees, allowing them to focus on other essential tasks, such as brood rearing.
In conclusion, making a candy board for bees is a simple and cost-effective way to provide your bees with a reliable food source during the colder months. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can create a candy board that will ensure your bees’ survival and well-being. Remember, for all your beekeeping needs, visit BeeKeepinglove.com.
Advantages of Using a Candy Board
Candy boards offer several advantages to beekeepers and their bees. Here are some of the benefits:
Reliable Food Source: Candy boards provide bees with a stable food source during winter, ensuring their survival.
Easy to Make: Candy boards are easy to make and require only a few materials, making them a cost-effective solution for beekeepers.
Reduced Risk of Moisture Buildup: Unlike other feeding methods, candy boards provide adequate ventilation, reducing the risk of moisture buildup.
Reduced Risk of Disease: Candy boards are less likely to spread disease compared to other feeding methods, as it provides a barrier between the bees and the food source.
Reduced Risk of Starvation: Candy boards allow bees to feed whenever they want, reducing the risk of starvation during winter.
In conclusion, making a candy board for bees is a simple and cost-effective way to provide bees with a reliable food source during winter. By following our step-by-step instructions, you can create a candy board that will ensure your bees’ survival during the colder months.
As a beekeeper, it’s important to take care of your bees and provide them with the necessary resources to thrive. Making a candy board is an excellent way to do that.
At BeeKeepingLove.com, we encourage all beekeepers to try making a candy board for their bees. By doing so, you’ll be contributing to the survival of honeybees, which play a critical role in our ecosystem.