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All honey bees live in families with several tens of thousands of worker bees and only one queen. Drones are in the family only in the summer, and their number is only a few hundred.
She is the ancestor of the family, and everything depends on what quality she is: the strength of the family, its growth and, ultimately, the amount of honey collected by the family.
The selection of such queens should be done constantly. Hoping for the purchase of elite queens is still a pipe dream of all beekeepers in our country.
The queen lays the fertilized eggs in ordinary cells from which the worker bees emerge.
The uterus lays unfertilized eggs in drone cells, and drones emerge from them. Science has not yet proven how the uterus catches this difference and puts fertilized eggs in some cells, and not in others.
It is assumed that due to the fact that the diameter of an ordinary cell is much smaller than that of a drone, the uterus, having lowered the abdomen into the cell, touches their walls with the hairs on the abdomen, and this touch does not occur in the drone cells, and the uterus lays unfertilized eggs in them ...
The queen can live for several years if she satisfies the beekeeper in her qualities. But it must be borne in mind that even highly productive, elite, uterus already in the third year reduce their egg production, and if you have your own ordinary uterus, then it is better to imagine them every year.
In size, the queen bee is almost twice as long as the working bee, and her genitals are developed, while in the working bee they are in their infancy. However, if a queen is absent in a family for a long time, 2-3 weeks, and the bees are deprived of the opportunity to lay queen cells to hatch their queen, they begin to feed individual, largest specimens of worker bees with royal jelly, and tinder bees are obtained from them. Such bees lay unfertilized eggs in ordinary cells. Drones come out of them. But they are not capable of mating with the uterus. Such families are doomed to extinction due to lack of family growth. The beekeeper must monitor this and prevent the long absence of the queen in the family.
If you compare the uterus with a drone, then you can easily notice that the wings of the uterus are much shorter than the abdomen. The abdomen itself is graceful, oval with an elongated tip. In a drone, the wings are equal to the length of the abdomen, and it ends in a lowered rounding, the uterus has a sting, drones do not.
In summer, in warm weather and plentiful bribe, when the weight gain of the control hive per day is 2-3 kg, the uterus is capable of laying up to two or more thousand eggs.
The uterus becomes sexually mature after leaving the mother liquor in 5-10 days. It flies to fly over to the place of concentration of drones on a warm clear day.
On the second or third day after mating with drones, she starts laying eggs and from that time on she never leaves the family, with the exception of swarming.
Despite the fact that the uterus has a sting, she does not use it against warm-blooded animals. She applies it only when fighting a rival for the right to remain the only ancestor in the family.
The fight between the two queens necessarily ends with the death of the weaker individual. The uterus has almost no developed organs for nutrition. She uses them only when the beekeeper leaves her alone in the cage. After the bees have accepted the queen, she is on their full support: from feeding to cleaning the stool. Without bees and food, the queen can live no more than 3-4 days.
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These are females. They are almost half the size of the uterus, although the period of their development in the cells lasts 21 days (the uterus is only 16 days).
All work in the hive is performed only by worker bees, and moreover they do it depending on age.
The youngest bees, which are 1-3 days old, act as purgers. They gnaw pupae in the cells, after leaving them, the bees clean the hive and generally do the most unskilled work, and this is because their corresponding organs are not yet sufficiently developed.
At the age of 3 to 13 days, bees act as nurses. By processing honey and bee bread, enriching them with the appropriate enzymes, they feed babies, uterus and drones. At the age of 11 to 23 days, bees do the work of receptionists. Their duties include taking pollen or nectar from flying bees, enriching them with the enzymes of their glands and putting them into cells. At the most mature age, 25-30 days from the exit from the cell, the bees are already doing a more responsible job of protecting the nest and are called watchmen. And the most common age group of bees is the flight bee. Depending on the number of babies in the hive and the abundance of the bribe, most of the bees become flight bees, or gatherers. Of these, a "special group" is formed, which is called scouts.
For simplicity, worker bees can be divided into two main groups - hive and flight. Hive bees are constantly in the hive and carry out all the work in it. Sometimes, and on a warm day, you can see how they "fly around" in unison in front of the hive, turning their heads to the tap hole. A novice beekeeper should pay attention to this and not confuse such a flight with the beginning of swarming.
The flying bee performs work to collect pollen and nectar. In the summertime, bees live up to 50 days; in winter - up to 8 months.
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Males that appear in colonies only in the summer, on the 24th day after oviposition. Their life expectancy is up to 3 months.
It is desirable that several thousand drones be bred in one or two of the most productive colonies before the start of the hatching of the uterus. A significant number of them cause rivalry, and the uterus mates with the most powerful. In addition to fertilizing queens, drones heat the brood when the weather is cool outside. As mentioned above, in the fall, bees drive out drones from the hives; but in those families where there is no queen or she went unfertilized in the winter, bees leave drones. By these signs, the beekeeper can judge the presence of a queen in the families.