Welcome to NY Bee Wellness, your source for maintaining healthy honey bee colonies

an educational nonprofit program to teach beekeepers honey bee disease recognition & to promote honey bee health

NEW Youtube video- Winter Bee Biology; Gard Otis

NEW Youtube video

Topic: Winter Bee Biology; Gard Otis


Why Winter Bees are Key to Colony Health and Survival

Dr. Gard W. Otis, University of Guelph, Canada, and Institute of Bee Health, Switzerland

Honey bees in winter are physiologically very different from summer bees. Winter bees store fat, have inactive brood food glands, become inactive, and live much longer than summer bees while their colony is not rearing larvae. The health of winter bees strongly influences colony survival during winter, so they are not only of academic interest to us humans. What exactly are winter bees? When are they produced? What causes them to become winter bees and not short-lived summer bees? And how does our bee management affect the health of winter bees?