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Honey

Not All Bees Make Honey

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In fact: there are about 20,000 species of bees in the world and only one makes honey.

The other 19,999 species collect pollen and nectar for food, but don’t produce it as a sweet treat. The honeybee is the one that most people think about when they think about bees. It’s also the only bee that has been domesticated by humans.

Other types of bees may make a sweet substance called propolis, but this is used as an adhesive to seal up cracks in their hive or as a defence against predators.

Honey Bees

The latin of honeybee is Apis mellifera. Apis is Latin for “bee”, and mellifera is the Latin for “honey-bearing” or “honey carrying”.

The word “honeybee” comes from an ancient Indo-European root word meaning “to fly,” because these insects are capable of flight at speeds up to 15 mph (24 km/h).

Honeybees can be found on every continent except Antarctica. They are social insects, meaning they live in colonies of hundreds or even thousands of bees. They cooperate to find food, build their hives and protect the hive from predators.

The honeybee is closely related to bumblebees and stingless bees, but they differ in size and appearance. The worker bees and queen bees of the colony have a sting, but it is not used unless they feel threatened or their hive is disturbed.

Foraging workers bring nectar back to the colony where it is mixed with enzymes and passed down through generations of worker bees until it becomes thickened into honey.

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