The Secret is in the Sea Salt!
Honey Bees need water to survive as well as to produce honey. They take water combine it with nectar and invertase (an enzyme the bees produce) to make honey that is so sweet to our taste. The water that they normally get in the environment is from natural bodies of water as well as seeps and moisture laden mud or even animal droppings. They do prefer water that has minerals, including salt, in it. Sometimes the source is not so appetizing like animal droppings. So my intention is to provide water close by that is pure with a natural minerals like sea salt added to it. I believe the honey my bees produce is sweeter because of the quality of the water as well as the sea salt that is in it. The salt is good for the bees as well.
The water with added salt, the mite treatments and even overwintering is performed with all natural procedures and products.
I am very concerned about how the bees are treated in all phases of their lives. I treat the hive components as if it were a tree cavity where bees naturally have their home. This involves roughing up the inside of the hive boxes -- like the natural inside of a tree. It also involves the moisture absorbing wintering cover which is fiber board. This is similar to the top of a tree cavity and how it absorbs moisture.
The Varroa mite (an introduced pest that kills honey bees) treatments that I use in the hive is an organic treatment. It is called Oxalic Acid Vaporization. A lot of our foods naturally contain Oxalic Acid like spinach, rhubarb and beets. There are many others and it is healthy for us to eat it. Believe me, it is the best treatment, in my view, to kill this invasive pest and still be organic."