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Is this normal for October?

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Boston Bees 

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Yes. Mine are the same today. A spell of warmer, dryer weather (here, anyway) has allowed the recently emerged bees to do their orientation flights, and the foragers to go outside and forage. You will see this throughout the winter (with fewer bees of course) on days when the temperature gets over a certain level.
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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Hi everyone,

I have a very active hive today (14th is October it was about 12 degrees outside when phot was taken) - lots of bees on the outside with lots of pollen going in. Is this normal for this time of year??

Many thanks
Yes
 

beeno 

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Yes. Most of the pollen in the hive are eaten by nurse bees to produce brood food, but also very importantly to complete their development after emerging. The winter bees, which will take colonies through to spring are emerging at the moment, so the foragers are busy collecting pollen for them.
 

ericbeaumont 

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Is this normal for this time of year?
Better to understand colony activity by the temperature and the availability of forage, Dani. A calendar is useful as a reminder of the cat's birthday but useless for knowing what bees might do. For example, in St Lucia bees work all year because temps are always cosy and forage is always available.
 

derekm 

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If you have an ivy flow in October and good bright weather it can be as busy as May. Seen bearding in October here in Hampshire
 

rook66 

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Hi everyone,

I have a very active hive today (14th is October it was about 12 degrees outside when phot was taken) - lots of bees on the outside with lots of pollen going in. Is this normal for this time of year??

Many thanks
Ivyfest , all my hives are chokka
 
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Firefly 

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I also had similar yesterday. Mine were also ejecting a lot of drones - creating chaos, as both the foragers and the drones were desperate to get in - it was quite a scrum. I mentioned that it is October, but they did not seem to care
 

beeno 

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I also had similar yesterday. Mine were also ejecting a lot of drones - creating chaos, as both the foragers and the drones were desperate to get in - it was quite a scrum. I mentioned that it is October, but they did not seem to care
Surprised that you have a lot of drones? How many are a lot?
 

StephenT 

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It’s a fascinating time of year. I haven’t seen a drone for a month or so but all hives have plenty of brood still. Good nectar and pollen flow although substantial activity is limited to just a few hours each day when the temperature reaches above about 12 degrees. Just hoping that they are not demolishing their winter stores and the ivy nectar is compensating. This time last year as a first year beekeeper I had a lot of DWV. Loads of bees with shrivelled wings which was a major worry. Not good for the the winter bees but they made it through to spring in an ok state (see the latest Apiarist blog for a good winter bee analysis).
 

charentejohn 

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Surprised me too, loads of Ivy pollen here in mid France one hive not madly busy the other pushing past each other through 7cm wide reduced entrances.
Weather is 5c overnight and 10c going to 14c at the high point in the day. As soon as the sun hits the hives (9c in the shade) they are out and about.
Good site for average weather, gives an idea of what to expect re temp dips and how long winter is Average Weather in Angoulême, France, Year Round - Weather Spark
 

Firefly 

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A half-share in 3...ish
Quite a bunch you have got there. Are they your own or imposters?
I think they are from that colony. There are 3 other colonies in the apiary with no drones on the landing board. This is a prime swarm I caught this year, which built up with astonishing speed and vigour. Then they replaced their queen in July - I think it was supersedure rather than swarm, because there seemed to be no loss of bees, though the queen cells looked more like swarm cells than classic supersedure. They still had drone brood in the second half of August
 

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