So far it has been an interesting "winter" season. We've been more than 100 days without any rain (and counting), though it doesn't seem to be a serious deterrent, the bees keep bringing in pollen and some nectar. They are definitely working something(s). I even had one hive swarm at my primary apiary, during the first week of January 2006. The swarm clustered on top of a post holding up my shade-cloth apiary curtain. The swarm also drew the attention of one of my neighbors, which brought out the County Health Inspector, he was a brave fellow. He assured me that my bees were not in any way a violation as far as he could see. The swarm was clustered at head height and he stood about 2 feet from them for over 20 minutes to determine that they weren't "overly aggressive". Then he was off to his next appointment.