Things I have learned about bees this afternoon
1. The Queen can live for seven years.
2. Workers only live for about a month and they don't sleep!
3. During the night you can hear a humming from the hive: it's the flapping of wings to dry out the honey and make it evaporate down to 10% of its original quantity. Mead is made from the liquid form.
4. Worker bees only sting if threatened and then they die.
5. Drones don't sting.
6. The Queen only stings other queens. The first action of the first Virgin queen to be hatch is to kill all her potential rivals i.e. the other queens not yet born.
7. The workers are in charge. They decide when the it's getting too crowded or when the Queen is getting past it. They decide whether the queen needs to lay drone, worker or queen eggs.
8. Worker bees spend the first half of their lives cleaning the hive and doing repairs. Then they forage for pollen and nectar.
9. The drones are sex machines. They don't do anything else but they only do it once and then die.
So much more but I'll stop there for now as I was getting a little confused.