“Almost 90% of wild plants and 75% of leading global crops depend on animal pollination. One out of every three mouthfuls of our food depends on pollinators such as bees. Crops that depend on pollination are five times more valuable than those that do not,” according to the website of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in the United Kingdom.
Such amazing feats! And to think, much of it gets done by pollinators like honeybees.
Would you like to know more fascinating facts about bees? Here is valuable information about them from the American Bee Journal:
- The honey bee is the only insect on our planet that produces food which mankind consume.
- A honey bee is capable of flying up to 6 miles with a speed of up to 15 miles per hour. To produce a pound of honey, a bee would need to fly about 90,000 miles or 3x around the planet.
- Honey consists of 80% sugar and 20% water. And, according to the National Honey Board, there are more than 300 varieties of honey, and that’s just in the United States. This wide range of variety is due to the fact that honey comes from different floral sources. What’s more, the flavor of honey from the same floral species at the same location may vary depending on rainfall and temperature.
- About 17-20 pounds of honey must be consumed by bees to biochemically manufacture a pound of beeswax. Female honeybees produce beeswax through 8 pairs of special glands on the underside of their abdomen. Bits of beeswax are put together to create the honeycomb, their home sweet home. But beeswax, like honey, is essential to people too. From medicine and cosmetics to clothing, furnishings, and batik art, beeswax is an integral part of our lives and culture.
- Whether the external temperature is 110 or – 40 degrees, bees make sure that the central part of their home is maintained at 92 – 93 degrees Fahrenheit.
- There are about 40,000 to 60,000 bees in a huge colony during late spring or early summer.
- The queen bee has a lifespan of about 2-3 years. Summer is the busiest time of year for her, as she lays up to 2500 eggs a day. Attendant worker bees take care of her needs, including grooming.
- During her 1-2 day period of mating, a queen may have up to 17 drones for mates.
- The lifespan of a worker honey bee is about 4 weeks in springtime but up to 6 months during the winter season.
- Throughout its lifetime, the average honey bee produces only one-twelfth of a teaspoon of honey.
- During its nectar collection trip, a honeybee visits 50 to 100 flowers.
- What causes a honey bee to buzz? It’s this insect’s wing stroke of 11,400 times per minute.
Now, this is another interesting story from Reddit’s r/Wellthatsucks community. A woman named Joy Chew from California discovered bees that appeared to be colonizing on the roof at the back of their home. The roof was adjacent to their neighbor’s garage, where beehives were found by a professional bee remover whom Chew had called.
What’s more, Chew and her neighbor were surprised to be informed that the bees were attracted to build their home at the garage because of an old beehive!
“My jaw dropped when I saw it. It was beautiful and surprising,” Chew told Newsweek, where her story also appeared. “I had assumed it was only a little hive. It could only have been a month or two that the bees were there.”
She further added, “The old hive had attracted the new hive, so killing the bees would not solve that problem. You’d get more bees coming still. It’s likely there have been one or two hives in the same wall before. Who knows how many generations of bees have been attracted to the same area.”
What did she do to end the bee infestation? Chew took the advice of the professional bee remover, who painstakingly removed the bees and the hives. He also applied paint on the walls to block the bees’ entry and the scents.
This eco-friendly solution not only helped the homeowners but also saved the bees, who also need to survive and thrive for the sake of their species and everyone else on the planet.