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Bees are some of the most important insects in our world. Honey bees, specifically, pollinate over 80% of all flowering plants, including many fruits and vegetables that humans consume.
In this blog post, you will learn facts about bees for kids, including interesting honey bee facts, where they live, how they make honey, why we need honey bees to make teaching kids about bees fun!
Honey bee facts and myths
Myth: Honey Bees Are a Nuisance
Fact: Honey bees are incredibly important for the environment. They pollinate plants and flowers, which helps make our environment more beautiful.
Myth: Honey bees are the only type of bee
Fact: There are actually over 20,000 types of bees in our world! Some honey bees live in colonies like other species. Others might be solitary or travel from flower to flower on their own.
The most common misconception about honey bee behavior is that they make honey for humans. Honeybees are actually just collecting nectar and pollen from flowers, then creating honey for their own use.
The lifespan of a honeybee is typically 40 days. They live in hives with many other bees, but the queen maintains control over them all.
The average number of worker bees in a hive is 50,000 to 60,000! However some large colonies have as many as 200,000 worker bees!
Where do honey bees live?
Honey bees are found all over the world and they often make their homes in “honeycombs”. These comb structures are made of hexagonal cells that can be used as an area for storing food or a nursery, or both.
Honeybee hives can be found on rooftops or other flat surfaces close to where they will find lots of flowery plants to pollinate. Honeybees can also be found in forests, grasslands, and near bodies of water.
Different types of honey bees:
There are many different types of honey bees but the most common ones people see are European Honey Bees. These particular species have a black abdomen with a yellow-banded thorax. Its head and upper body is black with a white face pattern most of the time.
The Indian Honey Bees are a bit different in appearance. They have black and yellow stripes on their abdomen, with the head having an orange band at its base.
How do bees make honey (kid-friendly)
Bees collect nectar and sugary water from flowers then bring it back to the hive. The worker bee makes a special kind of liquid called “honey” by using its stomach as a mixing machine. Honey is made up of about 80% sugar, 18% water, and 0.02% protein.
The liquid is placed in cells inside the honeycomb and fanning their wings, bees help evaporate any water leftover from its production. When a bee returns to its hive with a load of this “honey” it is stored there for use throughout the year or shared with other hives as food too.
Bees also collect pollen from flowers and mix it with nectar to create protein-rich royal jelly, which feeds baby bees larvae until they are ready for their adult diet of honey and pollen.
Why are bees important?
Honeybees pollinate plants for crops that we need to eat. They also produce honey and other bee products like wax, royal jelly, and propolis (used as a natural antibiotic on the skin). So without these hard-working insects, many of our favorite foods would not exist!
Honey bees are fascinating insects. They do a lot for us and we can help them with some of their needs by planting flowers in our gardens that they love to visit.
I hope this post has shown you how important these little creatures are to the world around us and given you some interesting resources about honey bees for kids. If you have any questions or comments about bees or fun facts about bees for kids that you want to share, please feel free to leave a comment below!