Soon the boys will be back in town!
Although there were no signs of new drones upon my initial hive inspections of 2020, the ladies will begin the process of re-establishing the drone population very soon.
During our Michigan winters, the drones (male honey bees) are absent from the colony. Procreation is a drone’s primary purpose. When the colony prepares for winter, the female worker bees escort the drones out of the hive and prevent them from re-entering for their services are no longer needed. As of last fall, all of the drones were removed from the hive to perish in the cold…
I admit, I have a soft spot for the woeful drone (male honeybee). This big fellow does not forage for resources, build comb or produce wax. He cannot even defend the hive, for he has no stinger. He is just a drone, with procreation being his primary purpose. The ladies tolerate him, knowing his services might be needed.
Look at those eyes! Spring is just around the corner, which means if he is a lucky boy, he will mate with a lovely queen …and then die immediately after.
Maybe he is not so lucky after all!
Spring brings new beginnings and new drones. Although they are under appreciated by most, without drones, the honeybee colony would not exist.
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