Post-Storm Update: Winter Feeding
Over the weekend, the Hudson Valley was blanketed with the winter’s first blast of snow and bitter cold temperatures. Wind chills reached thirty below zero – dangerous temperatures for much of the beginning of the week. We bundled up the chickens with a new roof over their run, opened all the cabinets in the 1772 house to warm (and easily access) troublesome pipes. Though we buttoned up all our honeybee hives with extra food, tar paper and insulation several weeks ago, as we were walking outside yesterday afternoon, it was hard not to notice all the bee poop and dead bees in the snow after their cleansing flights.
During active seasons – spring, summer and fall – honeybees only live approximately six weeks. While winter bees have a longer life span and die off is to be expected, it’s still disheartening to see the loss peppered across the apiary yard. Regardless, as temperatures eked towards the mid-thirties today, we prepared pollen patties to feed our honeybees and help them through the next few weeks.
A quick glance into all of our hives showed that all nine hives are still active – some even taking flight during our brief intrusion. And now, they will have more sustenance to endure the next round of winter weather, whenever that arrives…