Now your in.. The Buzzing kind of 🐝 Bees I’m on about. I really should know more about bees and bee behaviour. I love honey. But it’s all a bit thin on the ground. What I do know is I must respect the importance of bees in plant pollination, production of honey and hive security. I know a little bit about threats to bees and to agriculture, should we loose most of them. However, it is only recently that scientists have discovered how bees can breed A Sexually. It’s down to a unique extra gene and to date, only found in one Sp of bee (the Cape bee of South Africa.). Which are now found to be
e capable of reproducing without the need of Male sperm.... cool eh!
But this thread is nothing to do with that discovery. I know to respect bees, leave them alone, try to prevent harming them or locking them in captivity etc. For approx 6 years I’ve noticed extremely large bees entering a whole in the concrete step of the workshop door, (in single units) They have never bothered me and clearly easy to spot and hear when entering the hole in the step. This year it’s been different. One bee (not so large) stung me on the leg having entered the open workshop door by mistake. This year another bee colony has taken to another shed (entering the shed through a gap in the door. It’s these new bees which are considerably smaller in size on average, that Im interested in.
Three weeks ago I notice a bee bumbling (rollypollying) on the floor outside. On closer inspection I realised there was two bees in a scrum. The smallest bee on the back of the larger bee with front legs clamping onto the folded up and forward large bees wings. My first thoughts were is that bee dying? (Till I realised the small bee biting the back of the large bees neck) then (are they fighting?) I was under the impression bees mated on the wing, the queen flying up in ever increasing circles, leaving the weaker “Male” bees to fly it out. On a successful mating with the queen. The queen then tears out the males genitals (while still inside her) resulting in the death of the Male bee. What price a shag. This method of selecting the strongest specimen to promote health of the hive and stop multiple queen colonies developing within the colony.
Well that’s what I thought until I googled bees. Turns out bees often mate on the floor in a messy drawn out affair, a bit like us van dwellers really, Except it don’t take a solicitor to separate bees, we have much in common not.
But that’s not really why I’m posting about bees. For the last two weeks I’ve been finding solitary bees landing on a rubber footpath I’ve got down for winter weather. It’s the third bee I’ve found standing, struggling, lethargic but alive, but it will stay there now until it’s dead. Without google guessing, is this a natural occurrence? a diseased hive problem? or just too much time on my hands?