When the weather starts to improve over the next few weeks, during daylight hours look in your garden or apiary and make a note of where the sunny spots are.  These are ideal places to plant snowdrops/crocus/ Christmas roses and/or aconites for early forage for the bees next year.

Continual breeding mentioned a couple of weeks ago will also apply to varroa so it will be interesting, as well as necessary, to assess the mite levels in your colonies. Whether or not you remove your varroa trays throughout the winter, now would be a good time to put them in/clean them and replace to check for varroa drop in a week’s time. 

This should give you an idea of how much of a problem they are currently and whether you will need to buy some treatment that is not temperature sensitive to use as soon as the opportunity arises. With the daily variation in temperature the cold spells are probably not sufficient in duration for oxalic acid treatment nor warm enough yet for a few weeks for some of the other treatments available. If the drop is significant you may need to take action.

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