This year’s very mild Rhode Island winter has made it very easy to keep an eye on the bees. On the one hand, we don’t want it to be too warm because that stimulates the hive and they run out of winter food quickly – and there’s nothing growing that they can collect.
But on the other hand, I’ve lost many of my hobbyist hives just through brutal icy wind and cold. This year I brought all four current hives into my backyard and put up a bit of protection from the weather (just tarps) and have poked my head into the hive regularly. While their metabolism slows below 42 degrees and they don’t fly, they’re still active in the hive. Below that and they start to cluster and I try not to disturb them for fear of dislodging them.
I’ve been mixing up icing sugar fortified with HoneyBeeHealthy – it’s simple to mix up. They love it. Actually, I love it too.
So now here we are mid February and while the North East could face horrendous weather up until April, to have got this far without a major snow is a blessing.
This picture taken this afternoon – it’s about 55 degrees outside and there are a ton of bees all over the backyard. Life is good.