Thursday, 31 January 2013

Well, that bit of winter didn't last long.

Well that bit of winter didn’t last long.

All the snow has melted and we have had a week of showery, mild weather with temperatures up to 14°C. The bees think it’s spring and at least one of the queens has started laying again. Her workers were bringing in masses of Hazel pollen on Tuesday, - a sure sign that they were feeding new larvae.

Hazel is not the best in terms of protein content but at this time of the year it is pretty much the only pollen available in bulk and it helps the bees start their population build-up as they try to get ready for the first big nectar flows later in the spring. They will still be using their honey reserves for quite a while yet and might need feeding if these start running low.

Hazel catkins start appearing after Christmas and some trees will still be in flower in March.

The bee crossing on to the hive floor from the landing board is carrying Hazel pollen on her legs 

It looks like the first Daffodils will be out within a week or so and already there are quite a few other flowers out such as Snowdrops, Winter Aconite, Primroses and Hellebores.

The Winter Aconite, Eranthis hyemalis

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