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Tag Archives: honey bees

Just last week the temperature got as low as nine below zero, Fahrenheit, at my house. Today and yesterday it was pushing fifty above zero! The weather also brought in some new snow that was greatly appreciated. The warmth brought some stirring to Ken’s bee hives encouraging the honey bees to fly and relieve themselves and do some serious house cleaning. Here are a few of the images I made today. Those with blue backgrounds are on the metal surface that covers the tops of the hives. The bluebird sky makes a nice reflection, don’t you think? Some bees were walking around on the snow.

Last week, before the temperatures rose to the nineties, the garden was vibrant and full of color. This week, it seems tired and droopy, no matter how often we water. Fortunately I made some images last week and captured it at its prettiest, so far, this year. It was full of pollinators – mostly Ken’s honeybees.

Every winter it seems there is an unexpected thaw. Does that mean it should be expected? I just don’t know when to expect it. This morning I woke up and it was already 40º and there was a light wind blowing. A warm winter wind is a chinook and can be quite damaging to the snowpack. By mid-afternoon it was up to 50º and downright balmy. The snow was sliding from the roof with huge whumps, blocking our trails to the shop and greenhouse. I was shoveling snow and wearing a t shirt; it was that warm. Walking around the house to check on things, I noticed a dead honey bee on the snow’s surface. Then I noticed one flying and then I found more in the snow. At the hive, there is a great pile of dead bees near the entrance. I don’t know if any of this is normal. Ken thinks maybe the bees are cleaning out the bodies of bees that have died over the winter, taking advantage of the warm January day. I hope that’s all it is. This whole beekeeping endeavour is fraught with unknowns at every turn.























I know, I keep flipping between vacation posts and life here at home but, you know what? Life’s Everyday Photos just never quit. There’s always something interesting happening. Look around you.

Ken’s new bees arrived early, while we were in Florida so our friends Don and Mary who had volunteered to mentor Ken in his first year of beekeeping, took them in til we returned. Last Friday Ken and Don brought them up here and yesterday they opened up the hives to see how they were doing.


The crew – all dressed up with someplace to go, bees buzzing around them


Lifting the first frame from the first hive. Look – no gloves.


A good sign – the bees have been busy.


An extra dab of comb from the feeder area


He likes this.


Examining a drone. They have no stinger.


The second hive


Is that the queen?


We need a better look.


So far, so good.


He wanted a new facebook image


Buttoning things up



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