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Warm weather affecting bees on Vancouver Island

The warmer weather is affecting bees on Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast.

Homegrown Bee is a beekeeping supply and education store in Comox Valley, where they provide beekeeping equipment and workshops for the community.

With the cold snap and now warmer temperatures, beekeeper Rachel Halliwell says this seems like an unusual winter.

“Really cold weather, snow and all of sudden temperatures are up to 8,9, and 10 degrees,” said Halliwell.

“I feel like we haven’t seen winter like this in wintertime for a while.”

She suspects that the queen bees will start laying their brood earlier than normal because the warm temperatures cause an uptick in activity within the hive.

Halliwell also says hives are consuming a lot of their winter stores.

“Before they get into wintertime, they are storing up honey for the winter months and they try to keep the internal temperature at a certain degree,” said Halliwell.

“When there is warmer weather, and the bees are moving actively in the colony, they can eat their winter sources faster. We are seeing lighter weights of hives earlier than usual.”

She says if another cold snap were to happen this year, they might run into problems.

She adds that for future events, beekeepers need to be conscious of what is going on in the weather and to figure out what to do in the event of warmer-than-usual weather.

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