Honeybees are part of a group of insects in the family Apidae, which in broad sense includes all bees that make honey. They are social insects and live together in nests or hives, and they have remarkable 'dancing' movements that they perform so that they can communicate with the rest of their fellow bees about the location, distance, size, and quality of a particular food source in the surrounding area.Explore More
Honey bees are super-important pollinators for flowers, fruits and vegetables. This means that they help other plants grow! Bees transfer pollen between the male and female parts, allowing plants to grow seeds and fruit.
If the queen bee dies, workers will create a new queen by selecting a young larva (the newly hatched baby insects) and feeding it a special food called “royal jelly“. This enables the larva to develop into a fertile queen
Each bee has 170 odorant receptors, which means they have one serious sense of smell! They use this to communicate within the hive and to recognise different types of flowers when looking for food.
To share information about the best food sources, they perform their ‘waggle dance’. When the worker returns to the hive, it moves in a figure-of-eight and waggles its body to indicate the direction of the food source.
Like the saying, you're a social butterfly, honeybees are social and cooperative insects, and divided into three types. The Queen, Worker Bees and Drone Bees.
The queen's job is to simply lay eggs, she controls the next generation of the bee colony and there usually only have one queen in a hive.
They are the only bees that most people ever see, these bees are female bees and they forage for food such as pollen from flowers and build and protect the hive.
Several hunderd drone bees lives in a hive during spring and summer, but get expelled during winter months when the hive goes into lean survival mode.
Hives lives on stored honey and pollen, and clusters into a ball for warmth during winter, while larvae are fed from the stored to guarentee a new generation.
Honeybee eggs hatch within 3 days and then develops into larvae (AKA. Scrubs). They are then fed 'royal yelly' until they transform into pupae.
The hive is made of a series of combs that are composed of two layers of six-sided cells made of wax that are produced and secreted by the workers.
Honeybee colonies are susceptible to a variety of diseases and parasites, such as "Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD)", which caused massive colony losses.
The earliest dated honeybee ever recorded was found encased in amber in Myanmar, dating back as far as 100 million years, and over those millions of years the honeybee has evolved into one of the highest sophisticated insect.
The honeybee are believed to be one of the bees to be responsible for the broad biodiversity in rich flowers, because flowers has evolved with bright colors to attract bees so that pollination can increase the flower diversity.
Paintings within paleolithic caves from Spain, Africa, Anatolia, Australia, and India shows scenery of honey hunting by humans climbing ladders to reach nests of wild honey bees.
Ancient Egyptians considered the bee so important that they symbolized the bee as the king and the land of Egypt, and added the bee to their hieroglypic writing system, because they collected the honeycombs from clay hives and used the honey for food, medicine, and religious rites
“Grind to a powder river dust…and [word destroyed], then knead it in water and honey, and let [plain] oil and hot cedar oil be spread over it.” From a cuneiform tablet from Sumer listed the recipe for prescription.
The ancient Greeks considered the bee to be so important to their Greek culture that they placed an image of a bee on their coins to symbolise the goddess Artemis. The honey of honeybees were used in ancient Greek foods and drinks, especially the Cheesecake. The poet Archestratus wrote, “Forget all other dessert, there is only one: the Athenian cheesecake with Attica honey from Hymettus.”
Sura (Chapter) 16 of the Qur’an, titled “The Bees,” described honey bees as female creatures, a scientific improvement over many of the earlier ancient texts.
Bari, Italy beekeeping industry were created by Monks, they gathered bees and honeycombs, but after the collapse of the Roman Empire beekeeping fell out of practice, but then gained a great demand later by the Roman Catholic Church that used bees for wax and candles, which then revived the beekeeping industry.
The ship Discovery were sent in 1621 with provisions, such as diverse sort of seed, fruit trees and pidgeons, connies and peacocks, as well as beehives from the Virginia Company of London to the Virginia Governor to help the colony survive.
By 1730, the colonists set up over 170,000 hives. Although used primarily to obtain wax, honey bees were also valuable themselves, rivaling the price of sheep and hogs. Beekeping was so profitable and popular within the newly formed United States, the Continental Congress adopted an image of a beehive as the logo for its continental currency.
In his Notes on the State of Virginia, Thomas Jefferson described the importation of honey bees to America. He also explained that Native Americans called them the “white man’s fly” and used them to warn of approaching invaders.
The U.S. Government launched beekeeping programs to aid the rehabilitation of injured veterans returning from World War I.
Beeswax, used for rustproofing World War II military vehicles, became so crucial to the war effort that beekeepers received exemptions from military service.
Despite sugar rations, the Federal Government supplied beekeepers with enough sugar to keep their hives functioning. This allowed them to produce beeswax for the military and honey for consumption.
To honor the honey bee and the role it has played in the United States, many states adopted it as their official insect and the U.S. Postal Service even created this national stamp.
Scientists discovered the beginnings of Colony Collapse Disorder. Although they cannot attribute a single cause to the rapid decline in honey bee populations, the severity is undeniable.