Honey Bee Hives and Snow

What do honey bees do in the winter? In the winter, all the remaining honey bees cluster up. They form a ball around the queen and brood (once the queen starts laying again after winter solstice). To keep warm, some of the bees “shiver” by vibrating their flight muscles. If the temperature gets warmer, the cluster loosens. If the temperature gets cooler, the cluster tightens. The cluster moves around the hive, eating honey as they go. Once the temperature remains above fifty degrees and their is forage (such as dandelions), the older worker bees begin foraging.

In Iowa, we get a decent amount of snow. The bees do not mind snow as long as it does not get on them.

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In fact, if the snow gets tall enough, the beehive can be insulated by the snow.

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Abigail

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