Honey bees need a good residence to flourish and they never bear any offensive conduct. If you are new to the...
Is Melted Snow at the Roof of Hive Good?
Winters are harsh for the honey bees. The beehives need to be cared for else one could risk losing an entire colony of bees. Inspection of the beehives at regular intervals is necessary. During these times you may find the snow on the roof of the beehive to be melted. You might have definitely thought about what the melted snow could mean. A beekeeper must know what happens to a beehive in the winter. This article will help you understand all about the survival of bees in winter.
Do Honey Bees Hibernate?
Bees begin to prepare for winters during the fall. They are cold-blooded and cannot survive extreme cold. Nature has bestowed a unique gift to them that enables them to survive the cold winters. Remember that honey bees do not hibernate! They fight the cold in their own way. When the winters are over, they produce young ones and grow their swarm. The more the honey bees, the more workers to forage nectar and pollen they have to survive the winters.
What Temperature is Lethal for the Honey Bess?
When the temperature goes down to 12°C/ 55°F, the bees become lethargic. A honey bee cannot survive if their self-body temperature goes down to 7°C/45°F. This is why, as the temperature in the surroundings goes down to 14°C/57°F, they begin to form clusters and here begins their distinctive act of surviving the cold.
How do the Honey Bees Battle the Cruel Winters?
The clustered honey bees keep the entire beehive warm by vibrating their wing muscles. An outer cluster of bees makes a 7 cm thick wall. This cluster of bees is closely compressed. There is an inner cluster too that is loosely compressed. Some bees can move freely inside this around to take care of the brood. The temperature of the outer cluster is normally 13°C/57°F and that of the inner one is 33°C/93°F. Don’t bother inspecting the frame of the beehive if the temperature outside is less than 18°C/65°F. If the temperature drops down to 7°C/45°F and the clusters are small, then they will not survive the winters. For bigger clusters, honey bees need more food. The worker bees have larger hypo pharyngeal glands in the winters that produce royal jelly. This jelly is fed to the queens and the larvae.
Is Melted Snow on the Roof of a Beehive a Bad Sign?
You shouldn’t worry about melted snow on the roof of a beehive. The snow melts because of the heat produced from the honey bees. It is a sign that the bees are doing well and their colony is warm. Ensure that they don’t overheat else they will consume their food quickly and run out of food even before the cold ends.
How to Make Sure they Survive the Winter?
· You can always add extra food to make sure they have enough to survive the winter.
· Don’t heat their beehives; they might get an impression of the temperatures to have become warm enough to fly out.
· Bees need to defecate outside. They might not fly in the winters, but they come out to defecate. Their defecation carries a lot of toxins and if they don’t come out, their hives will become poisonous and they will die. Ensure that their entrance is clean of snow.
· Don’t open the beehives on days when the temperature is extreme. Pick warmer days to check for food, etc.
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