Please join me in celebrating the fascinating life of a honeybee. This first segment highlights various characteristics of a honeybee, which are critical to understanding their daily routine and how these traits ensure their survival. Included in this segment are interesting attributes such as the art of communication, swarm intelligence (SI), sophisticated masonry skills, bee diversity, and the economic impact of commercial pollination services in the lives of humans. I am sure you would agree, there is so much more to this tiny being than what meets the eye.
Article links :
Honeybees: An overview of their social structure, roles, and responsibilities of the workers, queen and drones, their diet along with interesting facts.
Video links :
World’s Weirdest: Honeybee Dance Moves (Short Video): Honeybees travel great distances to forage for pollen and nectar. When a honeybee identifies a promising food source it flies back to the hive to give the other bees the specifics on its exact location in reference to the position of the sun. They communicate this information by performing a bee dance known as the waggle dance.
Election Day… for Bees!– (Nova PBS- Short Video) : Discover how a honeybee colony finds a new home when they outgrow the existing one. The approach is systematic and as the commentator puts it “a democratic process.” This video demonstrates the ability of an entire colony of honeybees to collectively come to consensus on a decision. Although not explicitly stated in the video this is referred to as swarm intelligence (SI). Dr. Seeley (featured in this video) has studied swarm intelligence for 30 years and he defines it as, “the solving of cognitive problems by a group of individuals who pool their knowledge and process it through social interactions.”
You can read more about Swarm Intelligence in Dr. Seeley's book, ‘Honey Bee Democracy’.
Flight of the honeybee (Short video): Honeybees alone add over 16 billion dollars in commercial pollination services each year to the United States economy. So, what does “commercial pollination services by honeybees” really mean? To learn more join these pollinators on the 8,500-mile journey, which they undertake annually.
Renowned entomologist, Dr. Dino Martins is among National Geographic's Emerging Explores. Included here is his presentation at the National Geographic Explorers symposium in which he touches upon a wide range of topics such as bee diversity, the relationship between humans and bees which dates as far back as 77,000 years and the fragile balance between pollinators and human existence. Please click here to watch this video.
Did you know, that every beehive looks for similar features while choosing a new home. The prerequisites for an ideal honeybee home are - a live hollow tree spacious enough to store up to 10 gallons ( approximately 40 liters) of honey, with a small opening at least 15 feet above ground.
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