Here in El Paso, bees are one of the most common insects we encounter in the spring and summertime. This is because, as pollinators, they have abundant access to flowering plants this time of year. Their activity can peak in the late summer and linger into the fall—but what happens to bees during the winter months? While we don’t experience frigid temperatures in the winter often in our region, bees are nonetheless out of sight this time of year.
Believe it or not, some types of bees can actually go into a dormant state similar to hibernation during the winter as they wait for spring to arrive once more. Keep reading to learn more about winter bee activity with the experts at Pest Defense Solutions.
Common Bees in the Winter
Bees are more active during the warmer months of the year. They’re less likely to be around as soon as temperatures drop below 50°F. In El Paso, the following bees all react to winter a bit differently:
- Carpenter bees: These wood-destroying bees can remain dormant through the winter in their nests. During the winter months, young carpenter bees that hatched in the summer will hibernate in their nests. During the summer, older bees will die after larvae are laid.
- Honey bees: For honey bees to survive the winter, they must have a robust population with a secure hive and a large store of honey. Male honey bees die off, leaving the female bees to crowd tightly together in their hive with the queen in the middle. The female worker bees will vibrate and shiver around the queen bee, keeping alive until warmer days return.
- Bumblebees: All bumblebees in a colony except the queen will die if temperatures become too cold. The queen bees will hibernate, or overwinter, by digging small holes in the dirt.
Bee Prevention Tips in El Paso
While you shouldn’t worry about an infestation during the winter, it’s a good time to prepare for the coming months. It is possible to keep bees and other insects out of the spring and summer by using simple pest prevention methods. Seal cracks and crevices around the exterior of your house to prevent pests from entering. Consider planting your garden away from the perimeter of your property, or only growing non-flowering shrubs. Install tight-fitting screens on your windows and doors, and ensure that your trash cans have tight-fitting lids. Finally, keep your yard tidy and fill in any holes left by animals to prevent bees or wasps from nesting.
Want to Protect Your Property From Bees?
Any time of year, you should contact a local bee expert if you have bee problems. At Pest Defense Solutions, our team will identify potential nesting sites on your property or areas where stinging insects may spend the winter. As spring and summer approach, we can also prepare you for pests. Contact us today to get started!