A bee is an insect. Its body has three parts, head, thorax and abdomen. The bees legs and wings are attached to the thorax. There are two pairs of wings and six legs. A bee has compound eyes but they do not see colours the same as we do. They do not see red. A bee has two antenna which are sensitive to smell and touch. The sting is found in the abdomen. Bees have a long slender hairy tongue called a proboscis that acts as a straw so they can sip nectar, honey or water. Bees have pollen baskets on their hind legs. To help them with jobs in the hive bees have mandibles for cutting, grasping,or working with wax to construct the comb. They are also used for cleaning the hive, or for defending themselves.
Honey To make honey, worker bees go to find flowers. When a worker bee finds a flower, she takes her straw-like tongue and sucks up the nectar. She stores the nectar in her honey stomach. She goes back to the hive and gives the nectar to another worker bee. That worker bee gives the honey to another bee called a house bee. The house bee stores the nectar in a honeycomb. She then fans the honey with her wings to evaporate most of the water from it. That is why honey is not runny. A seal of wax is put on the honeycomb to let it age and turn into honey!
Pollination Bees play an important role in the life of flowering plants. All fruits start out as flowers, but they don't turn into fruits unless they are pollinated. If we did not have bees, flowers wouldn't get pollinated and there would be no fruit. Bees always go to flowers to get nectar to make honey. When the bees are on the flowers, pollen brushes up on them and sticks to them. Then, they fly to another plant and the process happens again. Only this time, some pollen from the first flower drops on to the pistil (female part) of the second flower. The pollen goes into the ovary where the ovules are stored, and fertilizes them. Soon the pistil grows into a pod or fruit.
Types of Bees Bees live in groups called colonies. Beehives are very crowded, with ten to sixty thousand in a hive. There are three types of bees, each with an important job. Worker When the worker bee leaves the hive, during its travels it collects water, nectar, and pollen. A worker bee has ultraviolet vision which allows it to see patterns on flower petals which attract the workers to them.Queen A queen lays all the eggs. For a queen to be born, the workers must feed the larva royal jelly. If a new queen is born, the old queen will kill it or leave with half of the hive colony. That is a bee swarm. Drone The drones have big, strong wings. They make up 10% of the hive colony. They use their strong wings for the mating flight.
Honey Bee Homes. Honey bees live in large family groups called colonies. Honey bees tended by beekeepers live in wood boxes called hives. Some well-managed hives in bee yards contain up to 80,000 individual bees. The central structure of the colony is the wax comb. It is made up of six-sided, white wax chambers or cells. The comb contains the stored honey and is home for the immature bees. Honey bees usually build their comb in a protected area or cavity with an access hole the size of a pencil eraser or larger. Wild (feral) honey bees nest in enclosed areas such as a hole in a tree if possible, When the colony starts to become too crowded, some of the bees split off to form a new colony. This is called swarming.