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Thread: do bee sleep

  1. #1
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    Default do bee sleep

    Hi, all! I want to know if the bees sleep at night time too? I caught one resting on the carrot plants enjoying the warm sun.
    But at night time when I check their hives they are feeding and very active than the day time.
    So wonder if they ever sleep during the night? Or they are up all night with insomnia or something.
    Last edited by Barry; 03-19-2013 at 05:22 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    They do sleep throughout the day, and mostly at night. In fact, if you have an observation hive, you can actually tell when they fall asleep. They hang from the comb heads-up to sleep. It's kinda cute.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    I was wondering the same thing, but always forgot to post the question.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    I never had the gumption to wake one female up let alone 50,000 of them! One's bad enough. lol

  5. #5
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    http://www.bushfarms.com/huber.htm#beesinrepose

    "When the workers penetrate the cells, and remain fifteen or twenty minutes motionless, I have reason to believe, it is to repose from their labours. My observations on the subject seem correct. You know, Sir, that a kind of irregular shaped cells, are frequently constructed on the panes of the hive. These, being glass on one side, are exceedingly convenient to the observe, since all that passes within is exposed. I have often seen bees enter these cells when nothing could attract them. The cells contained neither eggs nor honey, nor did they need further completion. Therefore the workers repaired thither only to enjoy some moments of repose. Indeed, they were fifteen or twenty minutes so perfectly motionless, that had not the dilation of the rings, shewed their respiration, we might have concluded them dead. The queen also sometimes penetrates the cells of the males, and continues very long motionless in them. Her position prevents the bees from paying their full homage to her, yet even then the workers do not fail to form a circle around her and brush the part of her belly that remains exposed.

    "The drones do not enter the cells while reposing but cluster together on the combs; and sometimes retain this position eighteen or twenty hours without the slightest motion."--François Huber, 4 September 1791, New Observations on the Natural History Of Bees Volume I
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    LOL! Workers get 20 minute naps, queen keeps getting pestered while she tries to nap, but the GUYS get a good 18-20 hours in one sleep cycle? That seems fair...

  7. #7
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    Beepro.....i can't believe you don't have an observation hive ...

  8. #8
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    Cool Re: do bee sleep

    Thanks all. If I have an observation hive then I will stuck there for 20 hours. Hey, I need my nap too
    you know. Anyways, I have been building those top observation foam cover so I can check them at
    night time too. I am not that advance yet but they are doable with so many links I saved up from here.
    Plexiglass comes to mind.
    BeeMan if you put a top foam observation cover on then you can see them too. Easy to make and fun to watch. Fun to watch when feeding patty and syrup on the top. You can put a high chair close to the top to watch until you dozed off too. Maybe in a short while. So far no burr combs yet as I constantly lift it to put new syrup
    everyday.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    I do not know... I noticed that bees consume most of the syrup during the night. Also, they cleaned up the hive and put trash including dead bodies on the landing deck. They drop debris from the landing deck in the morning and watch, how it landed... I guess, at least some bees are at night shift. Also, at least with one my hive - bees have party on the deck every night even if it is cold.
    Серёжа, Sergey

  10. #10
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    How cold is "cold?" I've never seen bees beard in the cold. Mine are indoors when it gets into the 70's (F). That must be one heckuva strong hive.
    Last edited by honeyman46408; 03-19-2013 at 05:29 PM. Reason: UNQuote

  11. #11
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    Good find! Somehow the fact that they have different sleep patterns as they get older just makes them that much more human-like to me.
    Last edited by honeyman46408; 03-19-2013 at 05:29 PM.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    I'm pretty sure I have seen some of my bees sleep - but I have never observed a hive sleep.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    Quote Originally Posted by Javin007 View Post
    How cold is "cold?" I've never seen bees beard in the cold. Mine are indoors when it gets into the 70's (F). That must be one heckuva strong hive.
    It is weird, but at night, here in Santa Monica we have 55oF - bees from my horizontal hive - have party on the deck every night. It is not bearding - they just socialize on the deck... Bees from vertical hive - all inside after 6 p.m... The possible explanation for this is that horizontal hive has much nicer and bigger deck.
    Серёжа, Sergey

  15. #15
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    Nope, the entire hive will not sleep like us humans do. Some will be on guard while others are still feeding even at the night time. Looks like they all take turn to sleep or do whatever bees do either day or night.

    What is the difference between a horizontal and vertical hive? All my frames are horizontal on the medium hive box. I have never try to flip the hive for the frame to go vertically. Now I wonder how that is possible? Do you have some pics for us to see the vertical hive layout?

  16. #16
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    Quote Originally Posted by beepro View Post
    ...What is the difference between a horizontal and vertical hive? All my frames are horizontal on the medium hive box. I have never try to flip the hive for the frame to go vertically. Now I wonder how that is possible? Do you have some pics for us to see the vertical hive layout?
    http://www.beesource.com/forums/atta...6&d=1350444298
    Серёжа, Sergey

  17. #17
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    I've also noticed quite a lot of bees running around (having a party) on the front of my horizontal hive on warm nights, especially hot nights.

    Beepro, horizontal hive (mine is double the width of a standard hive), not horizontal frames.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    Quote Originally Posted by MattDavey View Post
    I've also noticed quite a lot of bees running around (having a party) on the front of my horizontal hive on warm nights, especially hot nights...
    Technically, horizontal hive should have better ventilation control and thus less bearding... but for my bees, bearding was never happened - all my hives (sadly,not so many) have screened bottoms. Nevertheless, bees are on the deck. I am wondering if they are partying to watch for some animal-visitors at night?
    Серёжа, Sergey

  19. #19
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    Yes, it's definitely not bearding. More like patrolling. Maybe for wax moth or beetles.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: do bee sleep

    Quote Originally Posted by MattDavey View Post
    Yes, it's definitely not bearding. More like patrolling. Maybe for wax moth or beetles.
    Interesting point. I had a few small incidents with both enemies last summer but luckily it was very minor. Oil tray solved the issue. It was with vertical hive and I did not observe such "partying". The design of the horizontal hive is so, that entrance is 1/3 from the screened bottom and brood-nest-long. It is basically the slit in the hive's body. I am wondering if it could play a role? I am quite sure that you are right - it is probably some sort of defensive behavior. Beehive in general is not more aggressive than other, but I would expect some defensiveness since they already filled up 10 deep frames with nectar (uncapped) - they have stuff to protect.
    Серёжа, Sergey

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