Author Topic: Winter Forage?  (Read 637 times)

John C

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Winter Forage?
« on: February 15, 2013, 11:12:31 AM »

   Hi all,

    I went to visit the bees last week (Feb 6) on aa nice warm day and noticed many workers returning with baskets filled with a white substance.  Of course it was hard to cahracterize since the ladies were very keen on entering the hive, so I can't give any better description than "white".  does anybody know what this might be?  Are there pollen sources this early in Colorado?

   Thanks,

   John

Matt Oberle

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Re: Winter Forage?
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2013, 12:39:02 PM »
I had the same question a few Februaries ago. I was told it was likely dust from the bottom of some nearby bird feeder, not pollen.
Matt Oberle
Rookie Beekeeper
Fort Collins

Busy Bee Farm

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Re: Winter Forage?
« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2013, 03:32:28 PM »
Hi Guys - I have seen the same thing many times.  I decided to sacrifice a girl for the cause.  I caught one that had the substance on it and scraped it off and tasted it.  It had a sweet, piney, waxy taste.  I could not follow any of the outbound bees to a source but if I had to guess I think it may be weeping from near the buds of either scrub oak and/or pine trees in the area. I see this a lot on the pine trees but when tasted it is not sweet - tastes like turpentine.  The redbud bushes do the same thing and it is sweet.

Steven Lechner
Busy Bee Farm
Larkspur, CO
303.657.5360