February 01, 2010

The Spring Buildup is On

February and March is when many colonies eat up their honey stores and starve. I guess this is why.

January 22: 55F and the bees are able to fly.
Rather than cleansing flights, the bees' flight patterns - big swoopy spirals - look like orientation flights. All these new bees means our queen is busy laying! We haven't made it through Winter yet, but with the Spring buildup started already, does this mean the beginning of Bienhaus Season 2 for us? It certainly means that we have to be prepared to emergency feed.

It looks like they've barely touched their honey stores, but the shift to brood rearing will be accompanied by an increase in honey consumption, and the 7 or 8 combs they have may disappear quickly now. We'll keep peaking every week or so – through the window since it's still too cold to open the hive – to check on their progress. If we need to put fondant inside, we'll let you know. There is always an absolutely fantastic day in February, when it'll be more than warm enough to open the hive, so stay tuned.


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