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A honey bee colony could be said as a single organism. Bees are some of the most fascinating creatures and they work in collaboration with each other in a perfectly organized way. The life of a bee is just for its colony. Learning about the life of a bee is very important if you are planning to do beekeeping.
There are three types of bees in a beehive. There are two kinds of females, either workers or queen and male bees or drones. There can be tens of thousands of female workers, but there is just one queen in a beehive. Male bees are always drone. Each of these three types of bees has a particular job for which it is responsible.
The life cycle of the bee
Honey bees are not just creatures they are finely tuned machines. Each member of a beehive has a particular job and it does that with the most sincerity.
Around 85% of members in a beehive are workers. A worker’s life starts from a single egg in a cell of the honeycomb. In just a period of 21 days, the egg develops into an adult worker bee. After a worker bee becomes an adult, the first thing she does is to clean the cell in which she was born. The same cell will become the nursery of a new egg.
In the early phase of its life, she is responsible for feeding the larvae, cleaning their cells, and keeping the larvae warm. When the worker becomes 12 days old, the next phase of her life begins. During this phase, she does a lot of houses keeping jobs like keeping the hive warm, guarding the entrance, producing wax and much more.
When a worker becomes 20 days old now, she starts working as a forager. A beehive requires a lot of resources like pollen, water and other things to function properly. A forager bee does all that, she is one who brings all these essential things to the hive.
A worker bee can cover 500 miles of distance in his entire life.
There is just one queen of a colony and her job is to lay as many eggs as possible. She is the central figure of the colony. Among thousands of female bees, it is just the queen who can mate with male bees producing eggs. The queen bee’s life also starts from an egg just like a worker, but she is fed with royal jelly. It is a high sugar-containing goop secreted by the workers.
A queen mates with 15 to 20 drone bees and she collects millions of sperm in her body, which she uses to produce fertilized eggs for years. A queen starts laying eggs three days after mating and she does that his entire life.
There are just a few hundred drones in the entire colony. An unfertilized egg becomes a drone and their task is to mate with the queen so that she can produce fertilized eggs. A drone bee dies after mating because his organs get ripped off.
This is the life cycle of the bees in a bee colony.