Honey bees communicate through pheromones

Pheromones are chemical substances that, when secreted by one animal (via the exocrine glands), serve to stimulate either a behavioural or physiological response from another animal of the same species.

For years, scientific research has investigated the use of pheromones in honey bee colonies as a means to further our understanding of the workings and organisation of this amazing and complex superorganism, comprising a queen, thousands of workers performing different tasks, drones and dependent brood.

Drones have no father but do have a grandfather

Wow! This just jumbled up my brain. I’m not sure how this really works but yeah! The male bees have no father but yet have a grandfather. What it means simply put is that the male honeybees have no father because their entire set of chromosomes comes only from their mother, who is the queen. However, they do have a grandfather, because the queen, obviously didn’t start to exist from nowhere. She was a result of a fertilized egg and a male definitely played a role.

When a queen bee is removed from the hive, within a few minutes, the rest of the bees in the colony know about it

It’s pretty interesting how a colony of bees has a system that actually works. When a queen bee is removed from the hive, the rest of the colony that works towards ensuring that she is okay and everything in the system is working will actually notice. That’s why when at the hive you’ll notice a bit of an array of activities. Could be the moment the bees notice that something is off.

Only female bees sting

Did you know that it is only the female honey bees that sting? The male ones, also known as drones cannot be able to sting and if you were ever stung by a bee while just out in the fields, it was probably a worker bee. This is because the queen honey bee usually remains close to the hive so a sting from one is pretty rare. Unless of course, you’re somewhere near the hive.

Honey bees have to travel 55,000 miles just to produce a pound of honey

Imagine that! Travelling miles and miles just to produce one pound of honey. And as if that’s not enough, they’ll have to visit 2 million flowers with about 500 bees working together to achieve this. This is because one bee can only produce a half teaspoon of honey. No wonder it takes these many bees to make a pound of honey. And no wonder they have to travel all these miles.

The bee dance is very purposeful

You know that waggle dance a bee usually makes? Well, they are not doing that because they are really into it or just looking to have a good time. Rather, the dance usually enables honey bees to inform their sisters about the best locations for food, water or a new home. So really, it’s more a mode of communication for them.

Honey bees can live up to 4 years

The honey bee can actually live up to 4 years even though the expectancy is at 2 years. This is pretty impressive because other types of bees like drones can only live up to 55 days on average while the worker honey bees can only live up to 6 or 7 weeks.