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Thread: I.D. A Bee

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Mineral, Virginia
    Posts
    188

    Post

    While inspecting a hive this weekend, I noticed a small number of bees that stood out as looking not like the rest. Specifically, 99% of my bees are round and fat, for lack of a better adjective, and dark in color. These are long and thin, light in color and slightly smaller than the rest. New bee, old bee, what do you think?

    These are in my best hive.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,553

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    Young bees are a bit smaller and fuzzier, which makes them look lighter than the field bees. Also, sometimes bees drift from other hives and even feral hives and move in to stay. Especially if their hive was moved by someone, or they or queenless and looking for a more productive home.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    lewisberry, Pa, usa
    Posts
    6,080

    Wink

    Sounds like discrimination to me. Pointing out the differences in the light colored ones and the dark ones......and to even used the word "fat".....whats the world coming to...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    parker county, tx
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    7,923

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    My new hive has some bees that look different from the rest also. Noticed it yesterday when instpecting it. Some of the workers are long and thin, and one of them I almost mistook for the queen, but I spotted the queen a couple of weeks ago and she is much bigger. Their cappings over the brood and the honey are also very very light color (as in almost pure white). I figure it's just from some mixed breeding in the hive. Some of them are almost pure black with light gray stripes, some of them are tan with black, and some of them have a long and lean look. As long as they behave themselves, I don't care what they look like, lol.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Mineral, Virginia
    Posts
    188

    Post

    Mine are exactly the same Dragonfly. I had spotted the queen, then I saw these others that looked like little queens. But they were moving around unfettered, so I figured they couldn't be virgin queens. I just loaded the boxes and this hive has been behaving nicely.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    parker county, tx
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    7,923

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    If they are virgin queens, then my new hive is in deep trouble (laughing). Seriously, I thought about doing a search to see if any of the bee races have a naturally long and thin shape. Anyone know?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    46,553

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    I think it's mostly differences in cell size. If a bee is raised in a larger cell it get's larger. These subcastes are what led to the idea of artificially enlarging the bees by enlarging the cells. Bees naturally build a variety of sizes of cells and naturally have a variety of sizes of bees in the hive.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Mineral, Virginia
    Posts
    188

    Post

    interesting. thanks Michael.

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