10 Fun Facts About Honeybees (That Will Amaze You)
Honeybees are fit and fast! They fly at a speed of around 25km per hour and beat their wings 200 times per second, making that distinctive buzz we all know and love.
Females make up approximately 99% of the hive, but there is only one Queen bee per hive and she is the dominant, adult female bee, without which the rest of the colony cannot survive. A good quality queen means a strong and productive hive.
The majority of bees in a hive are worker bees. Unfertile females that do many jobs including nursing baby bees, cleaning, guarding the hive against predators and foraging outside for nectar and pollen.
Male honey bees (a.k.a. drones) serve only one purpose: to provide sperm for the queen. About a week after emerging from their cells, drones are ready to mate. After they've mated with the queen, they die.
The average worker bee lives for just five to six weeks. During this time, she’ll produce around a twelfth of a teaspoon of honey.
The Queen can live up to five years. She is busiest in the summer months, when she can lay up to 2,500 eggs a day!
Sadly, in the past decade or so, billions of honey bees have been leaving their hives disappearing, never to return – referred to as ‘colony collapse disorder’. The reason remains relatively unknown, and could be a attributed a number of factors. In some regions, up to 90% of bees have disappeared!
A hive is a constant 36 degrees Celsius average year-round, managed by the worker bees controlling the temperature and humidity of the hive.
Beeswax comes from eight special wax producing glands on the abdomen of a worker bee
A worker bee can visit up to several thousand flowers per day, gathering nectar and pollen. But to make just one pound of honey, a hive of worker bees must travel around 55,000 miles and visit two million flowers!