Marilyn Post writes:

This morning I did not hear the bees in the hive. It is too cold to open the hive- does this mean my bees are dead? This is my first hive and I have been hearing them all winter and seeing the results of hive cleaning activity. What can I do?

You can't always hear the bees when it's cold, but the fact that you've heard them all winter, and now they are silent may indicate they didn't make it.

Not really sure what you can do at this point. Winter is still upon us. What is, is and what will be, will be.We're going to have some days in the 30s next week, and you should be able to lift up the inner cover and peek in. Then you'll know. If they are still alive, and you don't see any honey stores, or the cluster isn't in contact with honey, you can add a slab of fondant directly on top of the cluster.

- Mike