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The Buzz on Bees with Bee Butler Michael King ~ July 14th

Fairmont Waterfront

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Honey bees only fly from the hive once they have reached what would be about 35-40 in human years. They have an approximate life span of 6 – 8 weeks and the first part of that life is spent entirely in the hive doing a variety of roles including tending to the queen , cleaning the hive cells, feeding the young larva with the Royal Jelly that they produce from a gland in their head for only the first 2 weeks of their life or feeding them with bee pollen or nectar brought in by other foraging bees.

Once they reach roughly the half way point in life they have also stopped producing royal jelly and now their career path changes into being a foraging bee leaving the hive in search of food.

From sunrise to sunset (approximately 14-16 hours of daylight in between during the summer months )they will travel from the hive an average of 50 times a day and up to a maximum of 5 kilometers from the hive before returning back again to empty their food supply into the hive. This could mean a daily traveling distance of up to 500 kilometers !
Even if they only do the ‘short haul' flights and travel only 1 kilometer away from the hive and back again that works out to 100 kilometers a day !

Bees can travel up to 24 kilometers per hour so a 5 kilometer trip will take them approximately 12 minutes. They can travel 1 kilometer in a mere 3 minutes !

Averaging this out to a bees life span this means they could potentially travel up to 10,500 kilometers before their short life is over which is one very lucrative Air Miles program wouldn’t you say ?!

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