The Colony • The honeybee is a social animal that lives in a remarkably well-organized colony consisting of three kinds of bees: the queen, the drones, and the workers.
The Body • All three kinds basically have the same three-part body plan consisting of the head, the thorax, and the abdomen. • In order to be able to successfully complete their specific jobs, the bees differ slightly.
The QUEEN Bee • Lives around 3-5 years • Largest occupant of the hive • The only one of her kind in the hive • Capable of producing 1,500 eggs each day • Can reproduce for life
The DRONE Bee • Lives 1 to 2 seasons (spring or summer or both) • Fatter than the queen bee • Makes up about 10% of the hive • Taken care of by the worker bees until food gets scarce in the fall • Worker bees will bite off their wings and throw them out into the cold to die.
The WORKER Bee • Lives around 3 to 6 weeks • Smallest in size in the hive • Always female • Makes up about 90% of the hive’s population • Literally works herself to death • Different tasks: building, cleaning, and guarding the hive; hiding away wax; controlling the hive temperature; collecting nectar and pollen