Nice story from http://hilltopbeekeeper.blogspot.com/2008/12/solstice-in-bee-yard.html
So making it to late December with six of my seven hives still alive and kicking is pretty good. I pulled the top cover from the dead hive, popped off the inner cover and peered inside. There was no cluster of bees to obscure my view through the three boxes to the bottom. But strangely, the bottom of the hive had very few dead bees. I had a bad thought: colony collapse disorder? A lifeless hive mostly free of dead bees is one of the signs.
I started taking the hive apart so I could clean it up for spring and store it. I removed the top box. Then the second.
In the bottom box: a tiny cluster of live bees, tucked away in the rear left quadrant of the hive.
I was happy (an understatement) to see them, but of course they weren't glad at all. In a flash, a few of the bees were up in my face and tangled up in my hair. I was able to swat most of them away, but a couple caught me in the hand. In another second, I could smell the fruity-sweet scent of their sting pheremone.
Neat blog, http://hilltopbeekeeper.blogspot.com/