What’s All the BUZZ About?!

History on Bees

Bees have dated back to about 100 million years ago and is thought to be found first in the far east. Bees thought to have been known as wasps back in the day and eat other insects. However there are no known records on how or when bees have changed their feeding habits. There are about 20,000 species of bees in the world. Some length from 3cm to 2mm long. Many people know the most popular species, the honey bee, and they prefer to live in a colony. Another known species is the bumblebee and they prefer to live in burrows.

Bees are well known for their honey, but they are also well known for how they help certain flowers. Some flowers can not pollinate themselves so they grow big and bright to attract bees so the bees can help them pollinate. Bees take the nectar from the flower and take it back to their queen and their colony so they can feed off it.

When honey was considered sweet and rich in taste, people in the past had to learn the hard way when collecting the honey. It was said that parents use to name their children after bees. They did this because collecting honey was such an important job in their time. Deborah and Melissa means “bee” in Greek and Hebrew language.

(google images)

What is their purpose

Bees are here to help pollinate the flowers. How they do this is they go to one flower, the ones that cannot self-pollinate, and pollinates the flower. The bees take the nectar and as they are doing that, the pollen from that flowers get stuck on their entire body and then the bee fly to another plant and that plant gets the pollen from another plant on it. It becomes a cycle with every plant that they visit. However, different colonies of bees are in trouble because their homes are being torn down to make way for farm land.

There are typically three types of bees in the colony. There is the queen bee and this is the largest bee of them all. Her purpose is to lay the eggs that soon become the rest of the colony. Then there is the drone bee. This bee is simply to mate with the queen then soon after, he dies. Lastly, there is the worker bee. This bee is the female of the colony. This worker bee feeds the queen and the young bees when they hatch. They Image result for worker bee drone bee queen beealso protect the colony. They tend to be the only one that has the stinger and if the bee hive becomes over heated, they go out, collect water and then use the water to cool down the hive by flapping their wings.

(google images)

How do they make honey?

The bee goes out and searches for a flower. They collect nectar and pollen. The nectar is sucked up through their mouth and into what is known as their “honey stomach”. This is separate from her stomach that she receives her nutrients from. She holds it in a different chamber. When this stomach is full of nectar, she goes back to the hive and transfers the nectar to the bees inside. Then those bees transfer is until it can be stored into the honey combs. As the nectar is being transferred, its moisture content is reduced, thus producing honey. It being stored in the honey combs of the hive is to feed the bees and the new larvae.  When she is done, she will clean herself off and then go out to find more honey. These bees typically only live for about six weeks.

Why are bees disappearing?

Many crops and flowers rely on bees to help pollinate. However, Harvard put out a study that determined certain pesticides are what’s eliminating colonies. They referred it to colony collapse disorder (CCD). Many studies have watched over 15 different colonies and have spread pesticides on some of them and over a year, they have watched the colonies decrease drastically. Harvard came up with the conclusion, that because bees help plants and flowers pollinate, they are picking the pesticides up when they visit a plant and taking it back to their hive which in counters the entire bee hive and it ends up wiping them out over time. Farmers may depend on bees to help pollinate the plants, but do not realize that they are killing their little helpers.

What would happen if the bees die out?

We are far from that… for now. However, here are some things that will happen:

  1. Fruits and vegetables will stop growing (self-explanatory)
  2. Self-pollinating: this is being done in China where there is a shortage of bees. They are literally going out to the flowers and pollinating the flowers themselves.
  3. Dairy products will disappear: certain food that dairy cattle eat, like alfalfa would not grow because it needs bees to pollinate.Image result for honey
  4. Cotton wouldn’t grow
  5. Food cost will go through the roof!!!
  6. Famine throughout the world
  7. THERE WILL BE NO ALMONDS!!!
  8. HONEY WILL BE NO MORE!!!!!

(google images)

How Can We Get Bees to Start Pollinating Again?

First off, we should start making places for the bees to make their hives. The bees need to be placed next to an area that has plants that need to be pollinated. Their colony also needs to be near water. Water is very important to the bees for them to strive. Also, bees seem to work better upwind so this means that it’s good to have bees at the bottom of the field if the plants are based on the hill.Image result for bee houses with bees in them

Another way could be using bamboo and taking a piece of timber wood and drilling holes in them and placing them in a protected area. One of the important things to think about is the attack of the birds. Making a place for the bees to call home would bring birds that would attack to look for the larvae. It is a good idea to put up chicken wire around the bee house to protect them.

(google images)

Alternative to Bees Pollinating

Self-pollinating

Butterflies

Birds for larger plants

Now many should think about killing bees when they see them. We need them to strive more than we think. They are more afraid of us then we are of them. Think about the future before you decide to swap them while they are working to strive our world!

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