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20 Things you may not know about bees!

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Curious Danny
203130.  Thu Aug 23, 2007 4:40 am Reply with quote

Supposedly all our honeybees were wiped out in the first world war.

 
markvent
210666.  Tue Sep 18, 2007 4:14 am Reply with quote

I had a stab at this in an earlier post :D

post 190637

Mark.

 
Curious Danny
284641.  Mon Feb 25, 2008 1:39 pm Reply with quote

Just a curious thing i read the other day.

According to "the book of animal ignorance", every third mouthful of food we owe to a bee. According to a quite recent report, people in britain throw a third of the food we buy in the bin.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4443111.stm

So bees could die out and if we tightened our belts, we would get by!

 
samivel
284833.  Mon Feb 25, 2008 8:49 pm Reply with quote

They'd have to be the same mouthsful, though, or there'd be a famine.

 
Curious Danny
285271.  Tue Feb 26, 2008 12:10 pm Reply with quote

Yeah, shame about that

 
cardinal guzman
325307.  Sat Apr 26, 2008 8:41 am Reply with quote

If a beehive is a bit rickety, the bees will fix it with propolis, which is a mixture of tree resins, saps and even commercial varnishes that they find. They will also use Propolis to encase anything that dies in the hive that is too big to carry out like a mouse in order to stop it stinking the place out. If a snail gets into a hive, the bees will not bother totally encasing it, they simply glue the rim of it's shell to the floor, neaty sealing it in it's own airtight tomb. Clever little Apis mellifera.

 
Sadurian Mike
325508.  Sat Apr 26, 2008 1:56 pm Reply with quote

cardinal guzman wrote:
If a beehive is a bit rickety, the bees will fix it with propolis, which is a mixture of tree resins, saps and even commercial varnishes that they find.

How do they buy commercial varnish? Just how much cash can the average bee carry with her for heaven's sake?

And do they use Nectar cards.

(Sorry about that last bit).

 
cardinal guzman
325582.  Sat Apr 26, 2008 3:22 pm Reply with quote

Sadurian Mike wrote:
cardinal guzman wrote:
If a beehive is a bit rickety, the bees will fix it with propolis, which is a mixture of tree resins, saps and even commercial varnishes that they find.

How do they buy commercial varnish? Just how much cash can the average bee carry with her for heaven's sake?

And do they use Nectar cards.

(Sorry about that last bit).


Groan :)

They wait until you've just finished varnishing your windows/door/shed/fence and then steal it!*. If you look carefully a day later, you'll see tiny sets of footprints on your shiny new finish. If the tracks look to be going backwards then stop suddenly - it's just a jokey bee playing tricks.

* In fairness, they are blindly communist and have no concept of money.

 
Tas
325666.  Sat Apr 26, 2008 5:30 pm Reply with quote

Quote:
13. The buzz that you hear when a bee approaches is the sound of its four wings moving at 11,400 strokes per minute. Bees fly an average of 15 miles per hour.


Ummm....wasn't that covered on QI. I thought it was the noise the wind made as it went through vents or some such? Or am I mis-remembering (The power of a good Port!)

:-)

Tas

 
indigo fugit
369266.  Thu Jun 26, 2008 6:21 pm Reply with quote

cardinal guzman.
Quote:
If a beehive is a bit rickety, the bees will fix it with propolis, which is a mixture of tree resins, saps and even commercial varnishes that they find


This is true.
An interesting facet of their behaviour is their sense of space. If a gap is a quarter of an inch or less the bees will fill it with propolis, more than this and they will attempt to build a honeycomb in the space.

 
Southpaw
476981.  Mon Jan 12, 2009 6:07 am Reply with quote

Two interesting things you may not know about bees.

- Their flight muscles (and indeed the wings of most insects) don't work in the same way as, say, a bird's. When a bird flaps its wings, its brain is sending an instruction for every flap. When a bee wants to fly, its brain turns the flight muscles 'on', and they remain on until the brain turns them 'off'. Bird muscles are contractors, bee muscles are reciprocators.

- Bees (and other Hymenoptera, such as wasps and ants) are haplodiploid. This means that the sex of a larvae is determined by whether or not the egg it hatches from is fertilised. If an egg remains unfertilised, the offspring from it will be male; if it is fertilised, the offspring will be female. Thus male bees have no father and no sons.

This contrasts with (most) mammals, which are diploid animals; that is, their normal cells are diploid. Gametes (eggs and sperm) are haploid, as they contain half the chromosomes.

 
Prof Wind Up Merchant
710802.  Wed May 19, 2010 10:54 am Reply with quote

They have no physical sting, they produce an acidic substance from gland from their behind.

 
Jenny
710953.  Wed May 19, 2010 4:02 pm Reply with quote

Some bees are stingless - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stingless_bee - but not all.

 
indigo fugit
710986.  Wed May 19, 2010 5:10 pm Reply with quote

Jenny wrote:
Some bees are stingless - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stingless_bee - but not all.

.
I can vouch for the fact that a Bumble (Humble) Bee does not have a barb on it's sting.

A Two Banded Humble Bee was overcome by the heat of my conservatory. I diagnosed sever dehydration and put it in my hand intending to place it in a damp shady place near my garden pond to allow it to recover.
The ungrateful thing recovered enough to sting my hand, I actually saw the sting enter my hand.
I jumped and accidentally dropped it in the pond where the fish made short work of it.

At least I tried.

 
imaginer
861335.  Tue Nov 01, 2011 5:07 am Reply with quote

I went to Luton discovery centre, they had some info on bees... IIRC they say that... Queens don't have a barb, and... that's as much as I remember clearly, but the 3 catagories would be Queens, workers/drones and males I think & each is differentiated where the sting is concerned.


Anyhoo...

If the Honeybees died out... and why do we think they would?... Like "Honeybee News" was reporting on thier TV in their hive the other day that thousands of humans died the other month in a civil war in Africa & they're worried for our future due to our preoccupation with dangerous weaponry & our search for cheaper fuel, which often turns out to be dangerous fuel to use; Carbon monoxide poisoning, radiation sickness"

The Honeybee news predicts that if humans die out it will have drastic repercussians for the bee population as they need people to farm the crops which bees frequent...

and besides... humans might make small mechanical bees!

and besides, when an animal disapears we often see (Looking back through natural history), that another animal takes it's place/fills it's niche, so if the honey bee died out, it's entirley possible that another creature would take it's place...

and besides... We could employ people in third world countries to go out into fields with cotton buds cross polinating the crops!!!!!

LOL, I am sure my arguments are not airtight, nor politically correct, just some thoughts :)

 

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