Trapping pollen will give you a source of good food for your bees, and it’s for free. And why more beekeepers don’t do it is interesting, but understandable. There are a host of pollen substitutes on the market that a beekeeper can simply buy and...
Trapping pollen will give you a source of good food for your bees, and it’s for free. And why more beekeepers don’t do it is interesting, but understandable. There are a host of pollen substitutes on the market that a beekeeper can simply buy and feed to the bees. Pollen traps add a layer of work and cost to their beekeeping efforts that many don’t want to undertake….and that’s too bad.
Of course trapping pollen changes what’s going on in the hive. Removing some amount of the only protein source bees are aware of changes their foraging behavior is several ways – especially, if you leave the trap on too long. Suddenly there’s not enough pollen coming in, so we need to recruit more pollen foragers, taking some of the nectar foragers off that task. And, having a pollen trap on a colony strongly selects for pollen foragers bringing home smaller pollen pellets that will get through the screen, which will take even more nectar foragers out of the equation.
Drones often get trapped in these things, too.
What do you do with the pollen? Sell it, eat it, feed it back to the bees? How do you store it once collected? How do you clean it so it can be sold?
Kim and Jim talk about collecting pollen, and what to do with it once collected. It’s good food for you, your bees and it’s free!
This episode of Honey Bee Obscura is supported by the three generations of beekeepers at Leibengood Family Apiaries, providing Georgia certified, southern raised bee packages and queens to central Ohio each Spring!
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Music: Heart & Soul by Gyom, Walking in Paris by Studio Le Bus, original guitar music by Jeffrey Ott
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