Checking in with the Hive

This month, the colonies are looking great! The populations have continued increasing, and the bees are bringing in plenty of pollen and nectar to build their food stores. The beekeeper saw a healthy amount of worker and drone brood, and they found that the queens are still laying in good patterns. When worker bees hatch from their cell they emerge with the duties of a “nurse bee.” These duties include cleaning the cells and feeding the developing brood. After a few weeks, they transition to take on the responsibilities of a forager bee, flying up to five miles to collect nectar and pollen for the ever-growing colony.

This is the “high tide” of the beekeeping season. Populations are still on the rise, and nectar and pollen are flowing. Brood temperature is important to the colony’s success and it needs to remain between about 91 and 96 degrees Fahrenheit to mature properly. If the colony’s temperature rises above 104 degrees Fahrenheit, individuals of the colony will festoon outside of the inner confinements to allow more airflow into the brood’s nest. This thermoregulatory behavior is also known as “bearding” because it can look as if the hive has a beard of bees on the outside of the box. This is completely normal behavior for healthy colonies during hot and humid weather.

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