THE QUEEN BEE
Her survival is important for common survival, for only the queen bee can assure the continuity of the colony.
The queen does nothing but lay eggs. After she does the first mating, she is always inside the hive, never leaves it, and lays eggs every day from early spring through late summer. The worker bees feed her and keep her clean.
Workers are fed royal jelly for only three days, but the queen receives it for the full six days of her larval stage and that too three times more.
Though the queen hatches from exactly the same sort of egg as the workers, she lives for about five years. She is longer than the male drones.
The queen flies off from the hive to mate, accompanied by a group of workers. Shortly afterward, she leaves her escort of bees and flies alone to where male drones are present. When she comes within a certain distance of that area she releases a pheromone which allows the drones to locate her.
The queen makes from upto 10 flights during her mating period, mating with a different drone each time. Since the sperm from one male is insufficient to fill her spermatheca, she receives sperm from several males. Following each fertilization, the sperm from all the males is stored together.
The queen will use this sperm obtained from the mating flights during her life span of 4 to 5 years. Unlike the reproductive cells in many creatures, the male bees’ sperm can be preserved for years in the queen’s body without losing their quantum potency.
.During the laying period, a queen lays from about 2800 eggs a day So a single queen may lay a mid boggling 1.4 million eggs within a year.
The queen is able to now the gender of the other bees yet unborn. When the queen wishes to lay a female egg, she releases a minute amount of sperm from the spermatheca into the duct, to fertilize the egg. The egg will be fertilized only if she releases sperm. As a result of this process, the female bees emerge from the fertilized eggs and male bees, or drones, from the unfertilized ones.
If the queen comes across a larger cell, then she lays an unfertilized egg in it. This means the queen lays as many drone eggs as the workers have prepared male bee cells for., not any more-- not any less
.They lick up the chemical from the queen’s body and transmit it to the other bees during food transfer, which takes place by mouth. During this process, the odor released by the queen is quickly transmitted to all other members of the colony. This means that all of the colony’s members share a common odor, distinguishing them from members of other colonies. There is no need to wear uniform.
When the colony finds itself facing the danger of having no queen, the worker bees immediately start feeding some of the existing larvae with royal jelly. The workers start to tear down the walls of cells to widen the regular cells and enlarge them into royal cells. Several worker cells are torn down for any single royal cell. The worker larvae inside them die in this process.
Shortly afterwards, the first of the specially reared queens emerges from her cell and sets about eliminating her rivals.
Bees possess a unique consciousness.
The males, or drones make no contribution to the defense of the hive, nor to cleaning, nor to food gathering. Their only function is to do JIGI JIGI with the queen to fertilize her, and die..
- Only females have stings.
- Only female bees construct combs.
- Only females do the ass shakin’ waggle dance .
- Only females are able to collect nectar.
- Only females nurse the young.
In winter, only female bees are to be found in the hive, because the males drones are either kicked out from the hive or if they act too stubborn, they are killed , much before winter’s arrival. As spring approaches, however, the worker bees begin to build cells for male eggs. The queen then lays in these cells eggs which will hatch into drones. The males emerge from these cells in early May.
Despite the male bees’ lack of abilities, the female workers take great care of them until they do JIGI JIGI with the queen. Half a dozen workers need to work non-stop to spoon feed just one of the 400 to 500 male bees in the hive. In other words, some 2,000 to 3,000 worker bees do nothing else than care for the drones for a specific period of time.
No more than 10 males are necessary for the queen to mate. Yet, a bee community raises hundreds of drones.
The male bees leave the hive and start looking for the queen some two weeks after they emerge from their cells. The males can locate the queen during her mating flight, as she lets out a scent.
The males need to be able to fly at a height for long periods while searching for the queen and to be able to locate her scent from a long distance away.
The queen and the male generally meet at high altitudes. The males are unable to approach the queen at lower than 15 feet . During mating, part of the males’ reproductive organs, including the sperm sac, rupture, and as soon as mating is completed, the male bee dies.
Once the time of the mating flight is over—and as the nectar levels in flowers start to decline in the heat of summer—the female workers’ loving , coy behavior towards the males changes completely. Although the workers look after the males very carefully during the mating period, once the JIGI JIGI job is done , they start to tear off the drones’ wings and attack them.
If the males try to eat anything, the workers seize them in their powerful mouths and drag them by their antennae or legs to the hive entrance and throw them out.
Expelled in this disgraceful manner, the males soon die of hunger, since they lack the ability to find nectar.. Therefore, as a last resort, they make determined efforts to re-enter the hive. Yet again they face the bites and poisoned stings of the workers.
Although the drones are larger than the workers, they sort of acquiesce to this female attack. They dont fight back.
You said survival of the fittest and ability to withstand change and all that, right?
Ever heard of conscious sacrifice to sustain a pre-determined social order?
Ever heard of waggle dance of the bees?
I forgot- you never even heard of DNA!
India must reduce the radiation limit of all the 3G towers from 10W/ Sq m to 5-- cut down by half--or we go the Singapore way, no bees -- all plastic !
CAPT AJIT VADAKAYIL