Honeybees

Some interesting facts about Honey and Bees

  • Nectar collected from two million flowers makes one pound of honey.
  • A honey bee will collect enough nectar to make one twelfth of a teaspoonful of honey during its lifetime.
  • A honey bee visits between fifty and a hundred flowers during one foraging trip.
  • An individual bee tends to forage on one particular flower species on each foraging trip.
  • To make a pound of honey a bee wouNHBKA Logold have to travel 90,000 miles – three times round the world.
  • A colony of bees in the summer consists of about 60,000 worker bees, one queen and several hundred drones (males).
  • To collect the honey for the year, an ‘average’ colony flies 12.4 million miles.
  • Honey has antiseptic properties and can be used to treat wounds and burns.
  • Honey attracts and retains moisture and is used as a beauty treatment. Cleopatra used honey in her daily beauty ritual.
  • Bee venom can be used to treat rheumatic diseases, especially arthritis and multiple sclerosis.
  • Aristotle (340BC) thought that bees collected wax from olive trees. In the 18th century, John Hunter described how beeswax was produced from the underside of the bee’s abdomen.
  • Beeswax is a classified food additive – E901.
  • Beeswax is used as a filler in woodwork, and to fill seams between plates in pool tables, in musical instruments, as a protective coating for cheese and as a lubricant in firearms.
  • Edible honey that was 2000 years old was found in an Egyptian tomb.
  • Honey can be used to boost energy levels as it contains natural sugars, fructose and glucose, that are rapidly absorbed by the body.
  • Romans used honey instead of gold to pay taxes.
  • Honey bees have been making honey for 150 million years.
  • The buzz a bee makes is the sound of its wings which beat at 11,400 times per minute.
  • Nearly one million tonnes of honey is produced worldwide every year.
  • The bee is the only insect that produces food eaten by man.
  • The bee is the most popular insect found in heraldry, even the beehive occurs as a crest sometimes.
  • There are 25,000 species of bee.
  • The queen bee is not able to care for herself. She has attendants that follow her around, feed and groom her, and take away her waste.
  • If the workers are receiving less than 0.001mg per day of the queen substance (pheromone) because of the number of bees in the colony, this acts as one of the main triggers for swarming.
  • When a bee finds a good source of nectar, it returns to the hive and dances a ‘waggle dance’ that shows where the nectar is in relation to the sun and the hive.
  • Each type and species of honey bee performs the ‘waggle dance’ in a slightly different way.
  • Male drones die after mating.
  • Even in the depths of winter, the colony temperature is maintained at close to 35˚C (95˚F) by the bees exercising their wing muscles.
  • It was traditional in Europe to tell the bees that their beekeeper was dead. If the bees were not asked to stay with the new beekeeper, they would die or leave.
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