Over the last 2 months, while attending to my hives, I've noticed a few things about the bees, their winter readiness specifically.
All of my hives were at what I would normally consider October 1 status as of Mid-August. That being well stocked with stores, with burr comb, but still a slightly larger than winter ready brood nest. Meaning the winter cluster will be larger than normal.
They also seem to be willing to work adverse weather more than in previous years, I'm seeing bees still flying in all but the heaviest of downpours.
This tells me a few things about the upcoming winter, at least here in the PNW. Winter will start early, meaning a fall that was just was wet as our spring will colder than normal fall temps, maybe 5 degrees colder. The winter itself will be colder than last year's. I'm not sure on the snow fall but we should have plenty in the mountains, if not in the lower elevations. If you can, put on a few fondant patties in your hives they'll probably need it because of going into cluster earlier in the fall than usual and the possibility of extended periods of freezing temps that will prevent the bees from venturing out the the far reaches of the hive to transfer stores back to the combs the bees are clustered on as they usually do. Having something overhead might be the difference in hive survival.
Supporting this hypothesis is the fact that my poultry are still coming out of their late summer moult. The moult was a much harder and even the young birds are moulting as early as 6 months old which is very unusual. I had some of my chickens and turkeys moult so hard that they got sunburn from having lost so many feathers. It was kind of wierd having birds running around practically featherless with skin as red as their combs. The regrowth of feathers has been longer than normal, over 2 months verses about 30 days normally, and with longer down feathering. Most young poultry don't moult their first year, it's usually around 16-18 months, but even my 4 month old pigeons have moulted this summer with some of the older birds loosing so many feathers at the same time they can hardly fly and producing naked necked birds. I can never remember seeing such an extensive moult in birds before.
BTW: Internationally the storm of earthquakes, volcanic eruptiions, and tsunamis will continue at the same pace as they have for the past 18 months. Places that have hardly, if ever, had a history of quake activity will experience some shakers or rollers. Those areas prone to earthquakes will continue to experience at smaller quakes in the 4-6 catagory being fairly normal, many smaller, land a few more big ones like have recently been seen in Chile and China.