Mountain Camp Feeding

I love the name of this honey bee feeding method.

As Fall turn to Winter, it is often good to feed the bees something. Of course, it is preferable to only feed them if they need it. But they usually benefit from something.

After a first frost or a period of very cold or wet weather, I usually feed them using the Mountain Camp method.

This is very easy. Put a spacer box on top of the hive (with no supers on), like from a top feeder or a moisture board, etcetera.

Put paper or newspaper down over the top frames. This material will help soak up moisture from the bees when they are generating heat in the cold, so it's OK for there to be quite a bit of it.

Then lump a large pile of damp sugar on the paper. The sugar can be dry, or wet when set on the paper, but the point is that plain granulated sugar is not very accessible to them, and the wet surface is easier for the bees to handle than only raw granulated sugar.

Place the inner cover above the spacer, below the top cover again.

During another future warm day, check on it and pull it out if used up.

This hive ended up taking some if the feed in, but left much of it. Maybe their stores were good already, or they had trouble organizing. Here they are on a warm day after a couple months of freezing temperatures (but also after I put more feed on top):

This hive however took the feed in very actively that day.