By Alex Wild | Scientific America
Over the next few months we will hear news of this winter’s honey bee losses in North America. The news won’t be good….
Honey bees survive winter in a remarkable fashion. Rather than slowing into diapause the typical insect way, letting the body’s natural anti-freeze proteins do the work, honey bees instead maintain the center of the nest at room temperature. They create heat by metabolizing honey, and the honey furnace is powerful indeed. Hive temperature doesn’t waver even at – 40º outside. Honey is fuel, and in cold winters bees need more fuel than in warm winters. They are like us.