My brother lives up in Rochester, NY. He was emailing me regularly last night as the temperature dropped. It was 4° at 11 PM when I logged off.
It went down to 13° here overnight. I never did get around to wrapping the bees. I know that they can make it through the cold. The problem will be their honey stores. I hope that they don’t starve over the winter. If I can find time I will wrap the bees this weekend. It is sort of like closing the barn door after the horse is gone, but This won’t be the last cold spell we get.
My brother is ordering some mixed Italian-Russian-Carniolan bees from an apiary near him. These are what is called “Survivor” bees. They have proven that they can make it through the winter.
Some of the bees he has now are mixed parentage that the Russian seller called “Amerikanski”, by which he meant they are mixed breed bees from swarms and other sources that over the years have proven they can thrive in the Rochester summers and survive the Rochester winters.
I will be making queens this Spring and I am hoping that my brother will too, and we can trade queens to vary our stock.