In the colder seasons, like Winter and Autumn, you’re less likely to see or hear a bee buzzing around. They get cold just like we do, and stay inside their hive to keep warm; similarly as if we were to stay in our homes on a cold day. But, what do the bees do to really keep warm? 

When temperatures drop below (typically) 50 degrees, this is when the bees start retreating to their hives. There, they form a cluster of bees in order to keep warm. However, in order to keep their colony alive, certain winter-ready bees are now the ones who make sure every bee is accounted for. The hive must have enough honey to eat as well as a large enough population of winter-ready bees to keep the swarm alive. 

The winter-ready bees have a longer lifespan (4-6 weeks rather than just a few) in order to ensure life duration to be the length of the winter season, and are also more plump than others to keep the heat. In the winter, the male bees, or the drones, die off and leave the female bees to create the heat that could reach up to 90-100 degrees at the center, where the queen is kept warmest. 

To support our local honey bees, you can click the link below and shop for some Staten Island honey and other great products. Happy shopping!

December 14, 2022 — Jenny Falcone