As temperatures decline so too does the activity of bees – when the temperature gets into the extreme lower fifties they will enter into hibernation.
But hibernation may be misleading as they don’t enter into a state of stasis but remain active within the hive to maintain a hospitable temperature.
If you’ve ever laid your hand on a hive during winter you would notice it’s warmer than surrounding areas.
I’ve read that a hive requires something like thirty pounds of honey during this hibernation period, that’s something for people to think about if they collect honey – better when entering Fall to forgo tapping a hive and wait to spring.
Temperatures are dropping in our area now and running in the lower forties to upper thirties at night, knowing this would be the way of it I took the above photo when the bees were still active.
I’ve blogged about grandfathers relationship with bees previously, a relationship that leads to he and I slogging through the snow a couple of times during winter so he can check on them and speak words of encouragement.
Hey, the man loves honey, peanuts, and bees though I may have the order wrong, I have a great respect for the conscientious manner he exhibits in all things.
This is a great time of the year, there’s a crispness about it that tends to liven spirits – little ones blow “smoke” and draw on frost covered windows, the aroma of burning wood and crackling pine cones at night, and the appearance of blanket wrapped shoulders and tousled hair in the morning as coffee is being brewed all speak the language of winter is coming.
I’ve read that bees maintain a constant temperature of eighty degrees within their hive, that’s a lot of energy being expended and something of a marvel also considering their size and sensory ability.
Most people don’t maintain an equivalent temperature in their homes, but then bees can’t put on a sweater or drape a blanket around their shoulders.
In the grand scheme of things humanity would be hard pressed to find a better more selfless friend than bees.