Native bees and butterflies employ other strategies to overwinter. However, these nectar and pollen substitutes are good ways to give your colonies the energy they need to keep their hive warm and survive the winter. Carry on reading to find out more about how bees survive our cold wet weather and what you can do to help bees over winter. Make sure the bees have enough food! Check the brood pattern within your hive—this is a good way to quickly judge the overall health of the colony. Don’t open the hive throughout the winter unless you have a warmer day—the temperature should be 40 degrees Fahrenheit at a minimum. Instead, to keep from freezing, they form what is called a cluster inside the hive. Honeybees Over Winter. They survive by using natural shelters: So what can you do to provide winter shelter to bees, beetles, butterflies and other pollinators? Great care should be taken when donating honey-combs from one hive to another. Winter brings many dangers to your beehives. Share your top beekeeping tips with us in the comments below! One hive was a year old this spring. Ventilate Your Hive. You want to keep your honey bees warm, but you also want to make sure enough fresh air is circulating through the hive. Soak for five to 15 minutes, stir and then scoop them up with the sieve. Even then, it’s best to just quickly peek inside your beehive to make sure that the cluster is still alive and that there’s enough food for the colony. Instead of working the bees now spend the winter months huddling together inside the hive. You can also reduce the amount of space in your hive by removing empty supers. And it is formed right around their stores of honey so that food is close at hand. Don’t Spray! As the temperatures drop and the days get colder, any sunshine that reaches your hives becomes crucial. You can estimate about 5 pounds of honey per deep frame, so you’ll need 12-14 frames. Plant winter-flowering plants Plants such as mahonia, heathers, winter honeysuckle, winter aconite, hellebores and snowdrop will provide food for overwintering bumblebees and others emerging on warm winter days. Additionally, you should pay attention to the honey supply in your hive. The interior bees generate warmth by vibrating their wing muscles. Why is winter an important time to help the honey bees? Feeding Bees in the Winter Some people cook sugar cakes to make bee fondant. Winter Is Why Bees Make Honey The honey bee colony's ability to survive the winter depends on their food stores, in the form of honey, bee bread, and royal jelly. For winters, the bees prefer nesting in warm, high places with solid insulation and plenty of sunlight. When it is time to start … With extremely cold temperatures Winter survival for honeybees is not a given, so beekeepers must know what warning signs to look for and how to help the bees … When it comes to the different steps to help your honey bees prepare for winter, ventilation is just as important as insulation. If your queen isn’t laying or is missing entirely, you need to replace her as quickly as possible so that the colony can accept a new queen before winter comes. @bostonflamingo. “Winter can be a good time to plan out spring gardens to provide bees food,” added McFrederick, an assistant professor at the University of California, Riverside. Feeding bees pollen. No one wants to check in on their colonies in the springtime only to find a hive full of dead bees. Honey bees hibernate in their nests all winter- think of it like a three-month long slumber party sans the pillow fights or fun. Smaller hive entrances give your honey bees less space to defend, which makes it easier for them to ward off threats. You can give your bees a helping hand in winter by creating a barrier with straw bales to block wind and harsh weather from hitting your hive. You can help them by insulating and reducing the hive. The bees will stay in the hive all winter long keeping it warm and eating honey.

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