Honey bees start increasing the population of the colony early in the year. In the late winter and early spring the honey bee takes advantage of every warm day to search for sources of pollen. The pollen is needed to provide protein for the developing bee brood. Here, we see a honey bee with her pollen baskets full of bright yellow pollen collected from the blossoms of a Forsythia bush. Forsythia, an old-time favorite of gardeners, is one of the first bright yellow-flowering shrubs to be found in bloom in the late winter. At this time of the year, with warm days interrupted by periods of cold, in which the bees cannot fly, pollen supplies are precious commodities.