13 Buzz-Worthy Facts about Bees! 

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Facts about Bees

Bees have been buzzing around Earth for around 30 million years! They are important for us as well as for our ecosystem, however, their survival is on the decline. For the past decade and a half, beekeepers have struggled with colony collapse disorder (CCD) which is a phenomenon where honey bees leave their hives. This has been causing populations to drop by up to 90% in some places. Did you know that queen bees lay up to 2,000 eggs per day? This was just one Fact about Bees read on to learn more about them. 

Facts about Bees

Day in and out, bees fulfil their duties and do their work slowly but surely! 

  1. The Perdita minima is the world’s smallest bee species and it measures only 2 millimeters. On the other hand, the carpenter bee can grow to the size of a grape! 
  1. Bees communicate using their pheromones! Furthermore, each colony has its distinctive scent, which helps members recognise each other. The queen bee releases a specific pheromone called the Queen Mandibular Pheromone (QMP), which helps maintain the social structure of the hive​.
  1. Bees are cold-blooded and become inactive or hibernate during the winter. Interestingly, honeybees huddle together and vibrate their wings to generate heat, hence keeping hive temperatures between 32 to 37°C near the queen. Although, some bumblebee queens hibernate alone until spring​! 
  1. There are some bees that have unique diets, such as sweat bees that consume human sweat and cellophane bees that create a beer-like beverage from fermented pollen and agave nectar​.
  1. The buff-tailed bumblebee that has a brain no bigger than a poppy seed can be trained to score in “bee football” for a sugary reward! 
  1. Most bee species live alone and dig their nests in the ground! Bumblebees and honeybees, for example, create hives or nests in hollows. Moreover, these can be above ground in hollow trees or even human-made structures, or even below ground in abandoned burrows.
  1. Additionally, many of the fruits, vegetables, and nuts you enjoy exist only thanks to busy bees! 
  1. The queen bee lives for 5 years and during the summer months, she lays around 2,000 eggs a day!
  1. Furthermore, bees have four wings that hook together for flight and unhook for rest! What a unique mechanism! 
  1. Honeybee workers who are orphaned by a queen’s death can raise a new queen from a young larva fed a special diet of Royal Jelly.
  1. Bees use specialised hind leg structures called pollen baskets or corbiculae to carry pollen! 
  1. A worker bee with a lifespan of just 5-6 weeks contributes around 1/12th of a teaspoon of honey. Small yet significant! 


How are bees unique?

Bees are unique in their social structures as they have highly specialised roles for worker bees, drones, and a single queen. Moreover, they also have an impressive communication system as they use the waggle dances to guide each other to valuable food sources.

How many days does a bee live?

The lifespan of a bee depends on its caste. Worker bees who are the busiest in the hive usually live for just 6 weeks. In contrast, queen bees can live for many years, thus guaranteeing the colony’s survival.

Do the bees sleep?

Yes, bees do sleep! They rest for many hours a day, with some catching more shut-eye at night when they are not out collecting pollen and nectar.

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I hope you had fun reading these Facts about Bees. If you want to know more about topics like this, then visit our Interesting Facts and General Knowledge page!

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