Interesting facts about honey bees

    Honey bees are some of the most fascinating creatures around. Here are some really interesting facts about bees and the honey they produce; some of them you may already know, but some of them you may not know!

  • Honey bees wings stroke 11,400 times per minute, which is what makes their distinctive buzzing sound
  • Honey bees are the only insect that produces food for humans
  • A honey bee can fly at speeds up to 15 MPH
  • Honey is the only food that contains all of the substances needed to sustain life, including enzymes, water, vitamins and minerals
  • To make 1 pound of honey, the bees in the colony must visit 2 MILLION flowers
  • A honey bee will visit between 50 - 100 flowers on a single trip out of the hive
  • Honey bees must eat honey or sugar water in order for their bodies to produce beeswax. This wax is produced by special glands on the underside of the bees abdomens, and the hive must consume 6 - 8 pounds of liquid feed just to produce 1 pound of beeswax, which is used to cap honey and to repair the cells of the honeycomb
  • Typical strong, healthy bee hive colonies can make over 250 pounds of honey during a good year
  • The queen bee can lay up to 1500 eggs each day during her short 3 - 4 year life span. She does not take care of herself - she is constantly fed & groomed by worker bees
  • Honey bees have 5 eyes - the 2 big ones in front and 3 smaller eyes on the top of their heads
  • All honey bees have 2 pairs of wings
  • Bees have special sacs on their back legs for carrying pollen back to the hive
  • Out of around 20,000 species of bees, there are only 4 that make honey
  • Honey bees will travel up to 5 miles away from their hive, and no matter what direction they go, they are able to find their way back
  • Female worker honey bees are the only bees that will die after they sting
  • Honey will fight infections and will speed up the healing process - if you have a cut or a scrape, smear a little bit of honey on it
  • Eating honey can actually improve your memory - honey contains pinocembrin, which is an antioxidant that improves brain function
  • Bee stings can help relieve pain caused by rheumatoid arthritis
  • Honey will never spoil - it will granulate into solid form, but you can heat it slowly to turn it back into liquid (view our degranulation page)
  • Each colony of honey bees smells different due to the queens pheromones - bees can recognize other bees from their own hive because of this scent - they can also recognize bees that aren't supposed to be in their hive, because they will smell differently
  • Honey bees are responsible for pollinating about 80% of all the fruit, vegetable and seed crops in the United States
  • Raw honey contains many beneficial vitamins and minerals that are not lost due to filtering & processing
  • Beekeeping dates back at least 4500 years
  • Male bees (drones) can not sting - they do not have stingers
  • A typical honey bee colony may have around 50,000 to 60,000 bees during late spring/early summer
  • There is fossil evidence of honey bees that dates back to 150 million years ago
  • Honey is used in beauty treatments because of its moisturizing and antiseptic qualities
  • Honey bees communicate with each other by pheromones and by dancing. A bee will perform a waggle dance to tell other bees where there is a food source
  • Bees have a very keen sense of smell - they can differentiate between hundreds of different flowers and they can also verify if a flower will be a source of pollen or a source of nectar from several feet away
  • Bees have 2 separate stomachs - one for food and another special one for nectar
  • Honey will taste differently depending on the time of year and what flowers the bees visited to make the honey
  • A honey bee's brain is only about the size of a sesame seed, but bees have the amazing ability to learn and remember. They are able to make complex calculations about the distance they have traveled, and they are able to communicate it to other bees to relay information about food sources. They can also memorize land marks around their hive area and are able to use this information to find their way back to their hive
  • Being a beekeeper is a very enjoyable business that has many rewards. There is always so much to learn from just watching the bees that you can spend hours with them and still learn something new every time!

From all of us here at Lappe's Bee Supply -

Good Luck & Happy Beekeeping!