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Bee year: A year in the beehive, tasks and survival strategy

Aktualisiert: 1. Sept. 2020

The bee year has a regular cycle that adapts to the climate, the environment and the food supply. The beekeeper should especially keep an eye on nature and its changes and support the bee colony accordingly, since the cycle can be delayed by a few weeks. While we start the year in spring, the bees only start in summer. In this blog we thorough go in depth about how a year with the bees looks like and what happens in the different seasons and months.

Not only beers and flowers .. the bee also hibernates ... Bee species .....

May to July

The heyday with wedding flight

The probably best known lifetime of the bees is from May to July. This is where their peak season begins. The new bee king hatches and her drones (male bees) are diligently bred. The armored starts because there can only ever be one queen in the beehive. The old or new queen therefore swarms with part of the court. The bee colony (30,000 - 60,000 bees) is getting bigger and stronger and new worker bees (life span 30 days) hatch.

As soon as the bee colony has a certain size and the beehive seems too narrow for everyone, the bee colony divides. This happens by swarming out the old queen and half of the bees and building a new beehive somewhere else. A new queen is fed in the old beehive and, after 6-10 days in good weather, even goes on a so-called wedding flight outside.

It pairs with several drones, where the sperm is kept in their seminal vesicles forever. In addition, the honeybees lay around 1500 and 2000 eggs per day. This continues until the end of July, when the bee year officially ends and the whole thing can start all over again.

August to September

Preparation for winter - feed storage

As early as August, the bees begin to prepare for the long and cold winter. Usually only a small part of the bee colony survives the winter. Therefore the winter bees hatch in August, which are cared for even more intensively than usual by the other bees and prepared for the tough season.

Furthermore, honey stores are created by the hard-working worker bees, which are said to last all winter. (The beekeeper often replaces these supplies with a sugar solution).The honey or sugar solution serves as food for the bees and helps the beehive to stay alive. The more bees can survive and hibernate, the warmer it is in the beehive. In winter, the temperature in the beehive is around 20-22 degrees. Bees freeze from temperatures of 7-10 degrees.

October to February

The winter time in the form of the winter grape - this means that the bees warm each other and ensure a temperature of 22 degrees in the beehive

Ab Oktober ist es meistens schon zu kalt für die Bienen. Mit der Zeit rücken sie im Bienenstock immer dichter zusammen um sich gegenseitig zu wärmen (Temperatur rund 20-22 Grad im Bienenstock). Diese Methode ist bekannt als Wintertraube. Vorrangig wird die Bienenkönigin geschütz und gewärmt, die sich im Zentrum des Bienenvolks befindet.

From October it is usually too cold for the bees. Over time, they move closer together in the beehive to warm each other (temperature around 20-22 degrees in the beehive). This method is known as the winter grape. The queen bee, which is located in the center of the bee colony, is primarily protected and warmed.

As soon as it slowly gets warmer outside, the worker bees start their tasks again. This begins with the cleaning flight in which all excrement that has accumulated over the winter time is disposed of. In addition, the first exploration flights can gradually start.

March to April

Winter time is over! The season begins and with it the new breeding season and the summer bees go foraging again

In March the short life of winter bees is already over and replaced by fresh summer bees. The worker bees are dedicated to their main task, namely to provide the queen with enough food. In other words, they are looking for food again. The new breeding season with egg laying for new bees (queens / worker bees / drones) begins at this time.

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