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Bee Amazed... Bees Are Really Rather Clever

bees.jpgHere are some facts about bees which I bet you didn't know...

  • The honeybee has an incredible ability to make perfectly shaped combs with hexagonal cells to transfer heat and use the most space within the hive. Research has proven that bees can regulate temperatures in their hives within half a degree of what's required in the middle of Winter when temperatures are at their lowest.
  • The legendary bee dance is used to communicate to other bees information about a food source location.
  • A bee's vision is amazingly complicated, allowing it to distinguish as many as 300 separate flashes of light per second. With a brain the size of a sesame seed, containing only one million neurons -- the human brain has 100 times that number -- bees are able to solve colour puzzles and can recognize a human face. They are able to fly rapidly and land with greater precision than highly sophisticated aircraft, without crashing.
  • About one-third of what people eat comes from the pollination efforts of honeybees, either directly or indirectly.
  • Propolis is the sticky antibacterial substance bees use to seal cracks in the hives.
  • Manuka honey is now officially certified as a wound dressing, It sucks the water out of bacteria, so that the infection-causing germs in the wound cannot live if honey is applied in the bandage.
  • Bee-based products are also undergoing research, to be used in arthritis and cancer therapy. Harvard is studying robots that emulate bees. They're called robobees.
  • Beekeepers are growingly concerned about colony deaths. For the past three to five years, bee deaths have increased dramatically- up to 30% on average. No one cause has been pin pointed, but several factors have been highlighted.
  • While the sting of a wild bee is no worse than that of a honey bee, Africanized bees are more aggressive, more defensive of their territory and attack in large numbers. These attacks are usually fatal.
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