My wife and I just returned from an awesome trip to Brentwood, CA to see our daughter, son-in-law and "grandpuppy". It was easy to think about my bees shivering back home when we were walking around in our shorts in 65 degree California sun! So, after returning home and getting the luggage unpacked, one of my first tasks was to put on my boots and head out to check on how the girls were doing. It was bright and sunny, but the temperature was only about 38 degrees. Looking out to the hives, I noticed that the wind breaks I had made looking out of kilter somehow. As I approached, I saw that they were partially out of the ground and leaning heavily up against both hives. My pace quickened as I walked up to White Hive to see that the wind break had pushed the outer cover partially off the hive!! AHHHHH! Part of the inner cover was completely exposed to the elements. Great!
The bees survive almost all the way through the winter, just to see them die because my stupid wind break opened up the hive. Lame! I pulled the wind break off of the hive and braced myself for the worst. I removed the brick holding down the top cover, set it aside and held my breath as I removed the top cover. Hallelujah I see movement! There is the cluster still holding fast against the cold right underneath the opening in the inner cover!! Those are some tough bees!