Like everyone else, we've been struggling with our honey bees. It's been quite difficult to build up strong hives which will consistently survive our rather long, and sometimes frigid, winters let alone simply keep them alive at this time in history when whole apiaries are being decimated.
Going into this winter we had a few strong hives along with two nucs about which Papa Pea was concerned. Neither of the nucs contained a large population of bees, and he was afraid they might not be able to generate enough warmth to keep them alive over our coldest months.
To help them along through any possible winter time difficulties, he moved them onto our south facing deck and up against the house.
For the last three days, we've been experiencing a fantastic reprieve from the cold with lovely sunshine and temperatures hovering in the low 30s.
A great time for the bees as it's made conditions opportune for them to get out of the hives for cleansing flights and needed housecleaning (hive cleaning?).
And have they ever been taking advantage of the opportunity.
The deck area in front of the two nucs is plastered with . . . well, bee poop. You would think the least they could do was go into the nearby woods to . . . umm, do what needs to be done.
All in all, it's a very good thing for the health and happiness of the bees. For the surface of our deck boards, not so much. Seriously, we're very grateful for this break in the weather and for great indications that these two little nucs are currently alive and well.