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Author Topic: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?  (Read 420 times)

Offline van from Arkansas

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I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« on: May 19, 2020, 10:30:47 pm »
Bees need salt and trace minerals, but how much is not exactly known.  So I want to provide some Himalayan salt? Ya know with all the trace elements but I have never found a good solid way to provide the salt to honeybees.

If I provide a rabbit salt block, the raccoon carry it off, if I provide a mineral salt block like for cattle the deer come from miles away dropping their ticks all over my property.  I had tick fever in 2018 and I would rather not go there again.

I see my bees drinking foul water which I am not sure what the reason is, evidently there is something in the nasty water.  Many beeks have told me they witness the same.

So any and all ideas considered for salt dispenser:, what say ye?

Health to your bees.
I have been around bees a long time, since birth.  I am a hobbyist so my answers often reflect this fact.  I concentrate on genetics, raise my own queens by wet graft, nicot, with natural or II breeding.  I do not sell queens, I will give queens  for free but no shipping.

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2020, 10:43:00 pm »
Mr Van, JTC Medic told me a couple years ago to add a "pinch" of salt to each qt of sugar syrup. It was off to the races when I did so but I don't have data to back this up. It could have simply been the time of year and the bees were ready to build comb anyway. But for sure when I did as suggested by JTCMedic. The bees took off with comb building.

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2020, 10:55:30 pm »
The above still does not answer your question about method to feed trace minerals and salt in a time of flow. I do not know the proper method, but as you, I would like to know as well.

Online .30WCF

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2020, 11:32:10 pm »
Saw a video of a guy putting it on a rock in a bird bath.


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Offline Nock

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2020, 11:39:30 pm »
My 6 yr old has a mud hole here in the yard he made. They love drinking from it. I?m guessing getting something from the mud. I have a salt lick for deer. I?ll check and see if they are using it as well.

Offline Bob Wilson

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2020, 11:44:58 pm »
My bees have ignored both the salt water and chlorine pools nearby, and go across the road to a dirty pond. They also loved my birdbath when it was dirty and growing algae, but would shun it for several days after I sprayed it clean.
I assume there are nutrients and minerals in the dirty water which they need.

Online TheHoneyPump

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2020, 01:24:10 am »
I place my bees within flying distance of the cow pastures, horse ranges, and farm/acreage lagoons.  The bees find the patties, apples, and dips when they need to.  Sometimes .... some of the things we do not know about bees are better left unknown.
 :cheesy:
« Last Edit: May 20, 2020, 02:02:25 am by TheHoneyPump »
Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees Buzz Bees

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2020, 07:35:37 am »
That?s rough Mr HP.    :wink:  My lMother might agree with you!

Offline iddee

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2020, 07:44:16 am »
DITTO what HP said. May not be your choicest way, but it is nature's way.

Otherwise, a rabbit block has a hole in it to nail it to the cage. Put a large fender washer on it and nail it to a tree or building. A raccoon cannot get it off.
"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

*Shel Silverstein*

Offline Bob Wilson

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2020, 01:16:39 pm »
HP.
In your profile picture, how many hives do you have on each pallet?

Offline JurassicApiary

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2020, 02:36:23 pm »
I assume there are nutrients and minerals in the dirty water which they need.

Bingo.  They seem to love ponds and feeders with algae and other growth.  No doubt this is likely due to the mineral presence in the water, salt or otherwise.  I've watched bees land in damp dirt and drink.  I don't judge--I just hope it's not contaminated with chemicals...

Offline AR Beekeeper

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2020, 02:49:45 pm »
Van;  If you have a Boardman feeder it can be use to give salted water at the colony entrance. 

Offline FloridaGardener

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2020, 03:33:28 pm »
When I'm pressure-washing my sidewalk and driveway the bees like to drink the runoff....ewww. 
 :oops:
Probably some calcium in there, washing seems to etch the concrete surface. 
Good thing I don't use herbicide or pesticide.

Offline Oldbeavo

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #13 on: May 20, 2020, 08:28:44 pm »
This is the first time I have ever heard of supplying salt for bees.
WE never do anything with regard to salt or minerals and haven't heard it mentioned by the Oz BK's that I know.
Do the bees need salt or is it we think they need it?

On a bit off topic but not. For a hobby I race pigeons, and it has always been recommended to put electrolytes in the drinking water for birds returning from a race. Good recovery etc. Well Canadian researchers found that because pigeons don't sweat the don't lose the salts from their bodies and so have no need for electrolytes on returning from a race, just water to rehydrate them. Companies have made millions selling electrolytes for racing pigeons on the basis of human logic applied to another species.
Is salt and bees in the same category?

Offline iddee

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #14 on: May 20, 2020, 08:33:30 pm »
Bees have survived for 10,000 years plus without humans supplying them salt. I would think they know where to find all they need, if any.
"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

*Shel Silverstein*

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #15 on: May 20, 2020, 09:46:09 pm »
Quoting Live Science

Unsurprisingly, given bees' need for nectar, the insects' feet are incredibly sensitive to sugar. ... The bees need salt for their own metabolic processes, and to carry back to their hives to help larvae develop

Offline Nock

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #16 on: May 20, 2020, 11:35:48 pm »
[ You are not allowed to view attachments ]
This is mud hole mine like. There were bees on it when I took that pic. And it rained today so water is everywhere. They like that mud.

Offline Oldbeavo

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #17 on: May 21, 2020, 07:09:51 am »
This is all I could find for salt, sodium chloride, NaCl

Sugar and Polyphenolic Diversity in Floral Nectar of Cherry ...link.springer.com ? ...
Dec 4, 2018 - According to the mineral analysis of nectar ion composition, concentration of K+ is the highest, following by Na+. Some levels of Ca2+ and Mg2+ have been also detected. According to [61], potassium and sodium chloride deter honey bees.

Just to add to the confusion, but I will go with Iddee.

Offline Acebird

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #18 on: May 21, 2020, 08:48:18 am »
The bees need water and preferably not man provided.  You only need to provide water for them if you live in a desert.  At the present time I have holes or gaps in the screening of my lanaui where I get all kinds of bugs in the pool, but not honeybees.  I suspect that is because in FL they have better choices.
Van I would suggest you raise any other animal near by your bees.  Caring for them will provide anything the bees need that they don't have.
Brian Cardinal
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Offline Ben Framed

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Re: I need a method, your idea to provide salt to bees?
« Reply #19 on: May 21, 2020, 09:14:01 am »
Quoting Bee Safe
Bee Health Consulting for Agriculture in veterinary Medicine

SALT PREFERENCES IN SUMMER AND AUTUMN

The researchers offered different minerals in a feeding experiment and compared if foragers preferred their solutions to deionised water. They studied this for several minerals (sodium, calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and nitrogen). For the effect of the season, they did the experiments in summer (July/August) and autumn (September/October). Interestingly, the water volume the bees collected did not depend on the season. Honey bees use water also for thermoregulation; therefore, requiring more water in the warmest months would have seemed reasonable. However, the preferrences for certain minerals did depend on the season.

Honey bee foragers preferred sodium (offered as NaCl, table salt) over deionised water independent of the season. The authors of the study explain this by the fact that above-ground parts of plants (i. e. also pollen) have very low contents. Therefore, the workers have to collect this micronutrients from other sources. This was the first confirmation for adaptive foraging, but it became even more interesting.

Preuss already in 1900 stated the preference for water enriched with table salt (i. e. sodium) compared to pure water. I do not have this last publication, but Kiechle cited him. Therefore, be careful in stating you are the first or second to examine something. You may just not know the publications because they are old or in another language.


References cited but not linked:

Goatley, J.L., Lewis, R.W. (1966) Composition of guttation fluid from rye, wheat and barley seedlings, Plant Physiology 41: 373-375

Kiechle, H. (1961) Die soziale Regulation der Wassersammelt?tigkeit im Bienenstaat und deren physiologische Grundlage. Zeitschrift f?r vergleichende Physiologie 45: 154-192