Bee Briefs

SMbeeBriefs16 ounces of Honey requires approximately 1,152 honey bees to travel 112,000 miles & visit 4.5 million flowers.

A worker honeybee produces only 1/10 of one teaspoon of honey throughout her lifetime.

Honeybees beat their wings more than 11,000 times per minute. That is what produces the buzz that we hear!

During the peek of summer, a hive can house 100,000 honeybees.

Wax capping covering the cells that contain honey, prevents it from fermentation.

8 fluid ounces, or 1 cup of honey weighs 12 0z. Water only weighs 8 fl. oz.

1 gallon of honey weighs about 12 lbs.

A Queen can lay 1,500 eggs per day.

In the winter, honeybees can consume approximately 50 pounds of honey.

At 12 to 18 days old, a honeybee is able to produce wax from 8 mirroring glands under her abdomen.

Honey has been collected for more than 8,000 yrs.

Field bees visit approximately 10 flowers per minute. They may visit over 600 before returning back to the hive.

One way that honeybees protect their hive is by “polishing” the inside with wax & propolis.

Most dark honey have stronger flavors than light colored honey.

Honeybees “dance” to communicate to field bees where flowers are located.

There are 3 “Castes” of honeybees in a colony; The Queen, Worker bees & Drones. Each have various duties within the hive and at various ages in their lifetimes.

A honeybee has 2 stomachs. One is her midgut where she digests food and the other is her Honey Sac, where she stores the nectar that will become honey.

Honeybees can only sting once. Her stinger is barbed to prevent it from being pulled out. When she flies away the stinger stays wherever she inserted it, thus pulling out her internal organs and she dies.   

A honeybee uses her antenna as feelers in the dark as well as to detect scents.

Drones live for approximately 8 weeks in the summer. In the fall, they are forced to leave the colony and they die.

Honeybees eat honey for energy and pollen for protein.

In the height of warm weather, a Queen can lay up to 1,500 eggs per day.

There are 4 stages to the growth of honeybees. Egg, Larva, Pupa & Adult.

Royal Jelly is produced & secreted from Hypopharyngeal glands of young workers. It is a nutritious substance provided for aiding in the development of a Queen bee.

A honeybee gathers pollen into “baskets” on her hind legs.

Field bees bring honey back to the hive and passes it to a house bees by transferring it from tongue to tongue.

A “swarm” of honeybees are not aggressive. They are simply in the process of moving from one home to a new home.

Another name for “propolis” is bee glue. It is a very sticky substance the bees make using tree sap, resin and plant matter. They use this bee glue to seal and protect the hive.

Honeybees are seen on every continent except for Antarctica.

The phrase Busy as a Bee is symbolic of the hard work of honeybees.

Drones are said to be lazy and often won’t feed themselves. A worker bee will feed them.

Honeybees have 5 eyes. Two of those eyes have over 3,000 lenses. The other three small eyes sit on top of their head where they act as light sensors.

A honeybee can fly forward, backwards & sideways.

Guard bees emit an “alarm” pheromone that let other honeybees know of danger lurking nearby.

It is the last 3 weeks of a honeybee’s life that she becomes a field bee. Her duty has become a collector of the needed staples for the colony. This may include any of these; water, nectar, pollen and propolis.

It takes over 1,000,000,000 flowers to make just one pound of honey.

Honeybees have ultraviolet vision which gives them the ability to see which flowers have nectar.

One reason Honeybees fan their wings is to help evaporate water from nectar so that it turns into honey.

While doing her “waggle” dance, a honeybee can show the others the distance to the flowers, as well as the location in relation to the sun.

Honeybees are responsible for pollinating over 100 food crops that we consume.

A “beeline” is the shortest distance from flower to the hive.

When a Beekeeper uses a smoker to calm the bees, the honeybees smell the smoke and will gorge themselves with honey and are typically less likely to sting.

Honeybees pollinate more crops than any other insect.

Honeybees and flowers have an interdependent relationship. Flowers won’t release nectar until the pollen is ripe.  

There may easily be 60,000 honeybees in a hive during peak season.

Every 3 bites of food that we consume is made possible by the honeybees.

Having honeybees in your garden or near certain crops increases plant production.

Orientation flights are sort of like practice flights the honeybees do just outside the hive to learn directions.

Honeybees are essential to the future of agriculture. No bees, no food.

Lorenzo Lorraine Langstroth (1810-1895) was the inventor of the most commonly used hive, the Langstroth Hive. It is still used today.

Honey bees build the hexagonal cells at an upward angle so nectar won’t drip out.

A queen bee produces several pheromones to regulate different behaviors within the hive.

There are many characteristics of the honeybees that beekeepers desire. Some are; Hygenic Behavior (Immune to diseases & pests), Wintering Ability, Honey & Pollen Production, Defensiveness & Demeanor, Swarming Tendencies, Population & Strength.

The Nasonov gland is sweet smelling and used to guide the bees home. After capturing a swarm, we see the honeybees fanning to release this scent for those who haven’t discovered their new home.

Metamorphosis takes 24 days for a Drone, 21 days for a Worker and just 16 days for a Queen.

Plants, in one form or another can exist without animals. But animals cannot exist without plants.

Nectar guides are the colorful streaks toward the center of flowers believed to guide pollinators to the center.

Honeybees pollinate 100% of the Almonds and the season only lasts about a month.

Burning Beeswax candles helps purify the air by helping remove airborne particles and allergens.

Festooning is a “bee chain” that honeybees form by attaching their front legs to the back legs of other honeybees and in a single-file chain. It is believed that this is done during wax production and comb building.