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Author Topic: Active winter bees  (Read 2678 times)
Lesli
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« on: February 03, 2005, 06:01:19 AM »

Hi all,
The temps have been around 0 F for a few weeks. I've been out to check on my hive, and found, when I cracked it to put in a sugar board, that at least some of my bees are active in the hive. I didn't keep it open long enough to see what was going on it there, but several flew out, and there was definite movement going on.

I thought that bees would be clustered and still in this cold. Anyone else with winter hive observations?
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Lesli
http://beeyard.blogspot.com/
Anonymous
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« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2005, 09:19:44 AM »

I started this thread on Jan. the 23d.
http://www.beemaster.com/beebbs/viewtopic.php?t=1821

Talked to a vetran beekeeper of 45 years near me on Monday and he said that is a normal happening in this area if you have hives that are darkened and a good wind break.
I know my girls are out and about. Am postive I lost my weak colony. I had expected that going in to winter but though it was worth a shot at over wintering. They would have made it in one of our milder winters where they could have gotten to the feeders.
 Cheesy Al
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« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2005, 11:25:54 AM »

Lesli:

I should PM this, but thought I'd share it - I just read over your BLOG (find it in Lesli's Signature) and it really is great reading. I'll be following along.

It is inspiring me to again get back to writing - something I love but never find the time to do any more.

Beth too has been busy Blogging it and I'm finding myself reading a lot of stuff lately. I hope you both get lots of visitors, although I know Blogs are also a great way to organize your thoughts and brainstorm. Great work!
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Beth Kirkley
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« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2005, 08:34:04 PM »

Lesli-
I also went and looked in on your blog. I only got through 3 of the posts, but intend to go back and read more. Nice stories. Smiley

Beth
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Lesli
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« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2005, 06:38:53 AM »

Thanks!

I started it for a few reasons. Partly because you think you remember things from one year to the next, but it just ain't so.

Besides that, though, when I start a new undertaking, I always find that it opens up the world to me a bit more. That is, it isn't just honey bees. It's learning that my great aunt Cordelia kept honey bees in gums in the Appalachian mountains, and that my grandfather loved tulip poplar honey. Note, please, that Cordelia was keeping bees--a woman!--around the turn of the 20th century. While the learned books of the time were talking about how a woman might keep bees, if a man would do the "hard" work for her, my great aunt was just doing it, hard work and all.  But then, Appalachian life doesn't lend itself to the vapors.

 Or how my own perspective has changed on the plants growing on my land.  I never noticed all that cat nip before, except to grab a handful for my own kitties from time to time. Now I see my bees working it, along with fat bumble bees, and I realize that those flowers support a whole lot of life I never noticed before.

Did I ever before care about the prevailing winds in my valley?

Did I even know or care that maple trees bud and produce pollen?

I had no idea those little yellow flowers are called birdsfoot trefoil.

And so on, and so on.  While not all of this will end up in the blog, it can give me a chance to reflect on these revelations while they are fresh and wonderful, before they become just another fact.
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Lesli
http://beeyard.blogspot.com/
Beth Kirkley
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« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2005, 11:10:13 AM »

Lesli-
You should put those facts on your blog though. That's good stuff. And one of those things that gets other people thinking and saying to themselves - you know, I didn't know that, that's cool.

Beth
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« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2005, 01:10:22 PM »

I will be adding more of that, along with--especially--pictures of those things. Saying that the bees work catnip is one thing, but having a great pic is so much nicer!
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TJ
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« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2005, 12:23:38 PM »

Hi Lesli, I was out to see my hives 2 weekends ago, around the 5th or 6th of Feb. It was surprisingly warm that day (for the winter) maybe 45-50 degrees. Both my hives were extremely active. I was AMAZED at how yellow the snow was around the hives. I could imagine all those bees saying AHHH!! as they relieved themselves for the first time since the Fall. I had bees flying as far as a hundred yards away from the hives. Don't know what they thought they would find. I noticed quite a few bees that landed on the snow and didn't look like they were going to make it back to the hive. I hope it's not too many. Next time it warms up that much I think I may start feeding them.
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Lesli
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« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2005, 11:09:55 PM »

I expected the bees to fly on those oddly warm days this winter. But I thought on cold days they'd be huddled and ignore me if I peeked. I did this once, on a cold day, and found the girls still seemed pretty active. On a day close to freezing, a few still came out to see what was up.
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Lesli
http://beeyard.blogspot.com/
TJ
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« Reply #9 on: February 21, 2005, 04:31:48 PM »

Yes, I have also been surprised on days I thought were too cold. I went to put in some mouse guards in late Nov when it was about 30 degrees and I was buzzed by 2 or 3 guard bees. They came right at my face, but probably because it was a bit cold for them, their aim was off-Lucky for me. I've been stung on the nose before and I DON"T like it.
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ibeecanadian
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« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2005, 12:36:13 PM »

i had bee's coming out on days that was way too cold. turns out mice had mad a home in the hive. i set a bunch of mouse traps, got them all. now the bee's are acting more normal and only coming out when the weather is worm enough for them.
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