Friday, November 26, 2010

Winter in the Bee Yard

Winter in the Bee Yard is rather boring.  The bees still fly when is it warm but not with as much energy.  This little girl came out one cool morning, checked out the temp and returned to the hive box.  The opening has been reduced by the wooden "reducer" to keep out the cold and hopefully to prevent the entry of mice in the winter.  Mice love to move into a hive box, it is warm, and there is a food source - honey.

This intruder must have thought is was safe to enter the hive.  Guess they showed him.

The bees are now all gathered into one big ball.  They will produce heat by doing something similar to shivering.  Ever so often the bees in the warm center will move to the outside.  They are polite to share the work.  Bees never freeze in the winter but they can starve to death.  It is our hope that they have enough honey stored up and will be able to access it through the winter to keep them going.

The bees have quit going to the feeder where we have provided them with sugar water for the past few weeks.  We will remove the feeders and now we can quit purchasing 25lb bags of sugar until spring.

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