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Drinking water for bees


Thanks for the great advice!! I do have 1 more question… I have tried to make sure there is shallow water for them to drink but it seems every time I go check on the there is at least 10 dead in the water bowl… I am guessing rain fills it up and a few end up drowning… would it hurt anything for me to fill the sugar water feeder with just plain water so they can get a drink without drowning? Since by the sounds of it I should be ok to stop feeding.


Hi Joe, as mentioned in your previous post by @JeffH a few stones in the bowl will give your bees a way to climb out of the water. As for the feeding question, if you have flowering plants and trees in your area then you could stop feeding however I would contact a local beekeeper if you know one and ask about any nectar flows for this time of the year. Regarding external feeding, just be careful as you are inviting all the bees in your neighbourhood to a smorgasboard along with any diseases they may be carrying, additionally if your hive is weak it could be robbed clean leaving your bees to starve.


as Rodderick said you need to have objects int he water the bees can use to drag themselves out if they fall in. Bees are NOT good swimmers- they can flounder for a while but drown- if they find a stick or something to latch onto they can climb out and dry them selves. They like to be able to creep up to the edge of water and drink- I use a bird bath full of stones- and drownings are rare.

They also love to drink from wet soil in potted plants- or from the ground.


This is what i used, at least 20 feet away from the hive. Used a little lemon grass oil to lure the bees there in the beginning and now I have 20+ bees at any given time drinking.


That is a perfect example for supplying water for bees to drink, a good supply of water and a safe place for the bees to land and drink.


I did this…


Just got a text from my mum- she has a little bird bath type thing and the bees were rarely seen drinking from it. Then she added a little solar powered fountain to it and suddenly the bees love it. Before that it had a solar powered airstone/aerator thing so it wasn’t that the water was stagnant- I wonder if the fountain sends out more ‘water smell’ if there is such a thing…


I firmly believe that bees can smell water the same as cattle and horses and neither of those have as sensitive sense of smell. Your mum has done well.


I can smell water, so sure - bees would :sweat_drops::nose:t2:

Really nice water features, everyone. That’s my next project, I’m dismantling an overrun strawberry and herb three-tiered pot in my veggie garden & will use the largest bottom pot for a water garden.

About using an entrance feeder for water, @Herrmanncam - it’s a good solution! I’ve used it when a colony is building up and it’s still a bit cold outside to expect them to fly much.


Here’s one I threw together, the bees took to it quickly in the heat. Didn’t take long for the mozzies to find either…


I went to my local big box store and bought 2 bags of river stone to use for foundation for the bees to drink off of.
I also have a solar fountain that helps keep the water moving. I drilled holes into the side so when it rains the excess water can drain out.


Any chance for a link for the fountain? I have been looking for something low-powered, and yours looks great.


Have a look on EBay Dawn they are as cheap as chips and having water movement will cut down the mozzies laying eggs in the water,


Nice one skegs :hugs: I plan to throw one together too! Do you think you’ll use mosquito dunks? I’ve been told they aren’t toxic to bees but I wonder.



@Dawn_SD I just ordered this one…


HI Dawn, Unfortunately the solar fountain stopped working. Not sure why, save your money.

I did purchase this from Amazon for $14.99.

Thanks for all your help!



I have @Peter48, and on Amazon too. The problem is too many choices, and I don’t want a tall fountain, just a low bubble of water. In SoCal, the higher fountains would evaporate in a day. Much easier to buy the same as someone who already has exactly the device I want. :blush:


Thank you @Dan_C. Guess I will have to keep searching… :thinking:


Dawn The one Eva is showing is different than the one I bought and now returning to Amazon.

Might want to give Eva’s choice a try for $15.

Just my thoughts.


I’ll post a review when I get t set up!