Spring is the time of year when flowers emit that sweet fragrance of nectar which allures honeybees.
Most people think of bees as pestering insects with vicious stingers, but that stereotype isn't true at all.
The only time a honeybee will sting is as a last resort to protect his hive or his well-being. He reserves stinging
to a last resort because he can only sting once and then he will die.
The number of honeybees
in a hive can range from a
small colony of 20,000-35,000
to a basic colony of 65,000 bees.
A honeybee colony consists of one queen, numerous male drones, and thousands of female workers. While it is often assumed that the queen
is the "boss", that is not so. The thousands of workers are really in charge of the hive, and also determine the queen's destiny.
At any time the female workers can decide to replace the queen bee, due to a lack of egg production or poor health.
The female workers take a young egg and feed it exorbitant amounts of royal jelly and a new queen will hatch.
Now, we all know that two queens can't live under one roof. The old queen will either be forced to leave or the new queen will kill her.
If one of them decides to leave the hive she may take a large group of loyal followers with her.
This is called a swarm and you may see the large group of bees clinging to a tree or side of a building.
Before they swarm, honeybees may be seen investigating houses and trees scouting for a new location.
This is when they may find a tiny hole or crack in your building and decide it would make a great new home!
The honeybee's life expectancy during the busy summer work months is only six to eight weeks, while during the
winter dormant season it can be as much as 16 to 20 weeks.