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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Dallas, Texas
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    Default Workers as pets?

    I was wondering not for the sake of keeping a bunch or bees as pets, but for the experimental value of the concept, how independent can a bee remain without it's colony? If a few/single bee were separated from its colony and kept in a friendly environment with food and adequate, lit crawling space, would it survive? If it were hypothetically cut off from its familiar pheromones that are emitted from its home hive, would it even attempt to return home?
    I am asking because I'd like to try this as a small scale project, but I don't want to foolishly starve or kill several bees for no reason.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Mojave Ca
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    17

    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    I'd assume that you could keep them alive, because package bees are kept alive for a week or so, when they are shipped to you... but it would be far from ideal for them to live that way. The most I'd hope for though is that they'd live for two weeks, but I think a solo bee would probably die after a day or two.

    I'd say try it, what the worst that can happen (a few dead bees).

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
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    Washington County, Maine
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    You will be killing bees for no reason. Bees are stock not pets. I prefer mine live.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Dewey View Post
    You will be killing bees for no reason. Bees are stock not pets. I prefer mine live.
    I'd only use 20 maximum, so I'm less worried about the effect on the hive as I am about the time expense.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Yuba City, CA, USA
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    47

    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Honey bees are a social insect and a superorganism, they are not meant to be solitary animals or domesticated like dogs. It's not likely a worthwhile experiment.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
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    Cumberland Va.
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    What exactly are you trying to accomplish? I feel like a bum every time I smash a bee after inspections, 20 bees in your living room seems like 20 bees not helping the colony to me. Maybe spend a little more time around the hives making observations and you wont have to bring them into prison. Just a thought. G

  7. #7
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    Jun 2012
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Good point, it's just an experimental idea because the findings could potentially help combat CCD.

  8. #8
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    Jun 2013
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    Pittsfield, MA
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    29

    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Quote Originally Posted by drmanhadan View Post
    Good point, it's just an experimental idea because the findings could potentially help combat CCD.
    You lost me there. Why do you think it could help combat CCD?

  9. #9
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    Jun 2013
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    Cumberland Va.
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Dont get me wrong, If you have an actual goal and are approaching it with some real idea of success, then devote a whole hive to it, science has costs. Any help to combat CCD would be worth the loss of many test subjects. I was assuming less lofty expectations. Of course, im sure there are many other scientists out there trying to find the same result. Choice is yours. Good Luck whatever you decide. G

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Thanks, it may just be the rambling ideas of an ambitious bored guy. I want to study the compatibility of solitude with honeybees.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Quote Originally Posted by mppatriots View Post
    You lost me there. Why do you think it could help combat CCD?
    Oh yea and sorry bout the ambiguity. If a bee can be without its hive with proper provisions overnight ( or even an extended period of time like a week ) there's viability in easy solutions for disorientation of bees in the fields of neonicotinoids

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
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    Santa Monica, CA, USA
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Quote Originally Posted by drmanhadan View Post
    Thanks, it may just be the rambling ideas of an ambitious bored guy. I want to study the compatibility of solitude with honeybees.
    No they are not compatible! We have sort of long house extended away from the beehives. From time to time some bees visit us - I catch them and release outside. Sometime, when bees are in protective mode , they sent a few kamikaze bees for my personal pleasure. So, I catch them using yogurt cup and keep them in the cup for some period of time before release outside. The rationale is that it could "distract" bee from its kamikaze mission To calm them more, sometime I keep cup with bee in the distant room, which much darker than others. I noticed very interesting phenomenon - when bee is kept in the dark distant (from beehive) room, it dies withing 20 min! Bee, kept in the room closer to the hive - is OK and ready for kamikaze mission. It looks like bees have some sort of "connection" to the mother-hive. Once this connection is broken, bee has no motivation to live. I really do not think that individual bee could have an individual life - it is part of the hive. It's like you want to cut finger and see how it could do without the body Bee does not have an individual purpose .... well ... other than sting me from time to time
    Серёжа, Sergey

  13. #13
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    Jun 2012
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Amazing phenomenon. 20 minutes is bizarre. Anybody else notice this?

  14. #14
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    Jun 2013
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    Amherst Virginia USA
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    141

    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Quote Originally Posted by cerezha View Post
    other than sting me from time to time
    lol

  15. #15
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    Oct 2011
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    Santa Monica, CA, USA
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    Default Re: Workers as pets?

    Quote Originally Posted by wengeasley View Post
    ..other than sting me from time to time... lol
    They recognized me. They do not interested in my wife and hopefully in my neighbors It is so fascinating to observe bees when they are really close to the house, but it has some disadvantages With bees, when we invite people for backyard party, we always added: "bees permitted." In fact, once, the party was relocated because of bees... I also need to plan my inspections very carefully.
    Серёжа, Sergey

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