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March in the Beehive

Updated: Mar 8

What's Happening Inside the Hive in March? Preparing for Spring!

In March, the hive is a hub of activity as the bees start gearing up for spring. On warm days, you might notice them venturing out of the hive, and there's a fascinating reason for this - read on to discover why!

Staying Awake Through Winter

While many insects hibernate during winter, honeybees remain active inside their hive, subsisting on their stored honey and eagerly awaiting the arrival of spring. To delve deeper into the life of bees during the colder months, take a look at our blog post, "Winter Bees: How Honeybees Survive the Winter."

A Hive in Transition

As winter progresses, the colony size diminishes gradually due to the natural lifespan of the bees. Come March, the queen bee resumes her egg-laying duties, albeit cautiously at first. She ensures not to lay more eggs than the colony can keep warm. The winter bees take on the crucial role of incubating the brood (beekeeper lingo for developing larvae). As temperatures rise and the colony grows, the queen increases her egg-laying, utilizing more sections of the empty honeycomb. With the advent of spring, the colony's population is set to surge, particularly as the first flowers bloom and the spring bees start foraging for fresh nectar and pollen.

Cleansing Flights: A Vital Ritual

On mild winter days in March, with the sun shining and temperatures above zero (think maple syrup season), the bees embark on short cleansing flights. These are essentially bathroom breaks, a chance for the bees to relieve themselves after being cooped up all winter. These flights are crucial for maintaining hive health. The bees also use this opportunity to do some spring cleaning, removing debris and dead bees that have accumulated on the hive's bottom board over the winter.

Sometimes, if we're lucky, the little ladies decide to land and have a quick visit, like this lovely bee. It's always nice to see them after a long winter!

As March draws to a close and the hive buzzes with the renewed energy of spring, we turn our attention to the next chapter in the life of the bee colony: April. This month brings about even more changes and activity within the hive as the bees continue their preparations for the busy season ahead. From the expansion of the brood to the intensification of foraging efforts, April is a time of growth and anticipation. Let's explore what the bees are up to inside the hive as they embrace the full bloom of spring


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