Whenever the bees have a chance to do anything that contributes to the survival of the colony, they do it, even if it kills them. After a week of not doing much of anything in freezing cold weather, the bees came pouring out of hives this morning, many of them coming back loaded down with pollen.
I don’t know where they found the pollen, but I’m impressed. Here’s a cropped-in grainy shot:
It looked as if the bees were shutting down for winter, but give them some early morning sunshine and temperatures hovering a little over 10°C (50°F), and away they go, making the most of what little warm temperatures are left in this year. And where is all this pollen coming from? A late-blooming field of Goldenrod must be close by. I don’t know.
I posted a few more photos in the Bees & Pollen photo album. Some videos may show up later on too. (Update: Here’s the video.)
UPDATE (Oct. 13/11): I still see plenty of these around. It’s like a cross between goldenrod and dandelion. The bees must have discovered a field of it somewhere.
The bees are stuck in their hives most of the time now. It’s cold.