Did you know that there are over 20,000 different kinds of bees?
Bees are pollinators and live off the nectar from plants. These insects are attracted to the bright colors and sweet smell of flowers and vegetables. While pollinating, each bee will collect pollen from up to one hundred flowers!
The concept of cross-pollination is something that can be easily understood, by noticing how bees pollinate! When the bees land on the petals, the plants pollen sticks to their bodies. The bees move from plant to plant carrying the pollen. The pollen is transferred to the other plants and moves down to the plants’ eggs. Once the pollen meets the eggs, a seed is formed. This is called fertilization. These seeds will create new plants. When a bee pollinates multiple flowers, they often carry a bit of pollen from each flower along with them. This cross-pollination allows for new species of flowers to develop and bloom!
Bees also collect nectar from each flower and put it in a special sack, called a pollen basket, attached to its hind legs. In this sack, the nectar reacts to special enzymes. This reaction begins the process of turning the nectar into honey. The bees bring this sugary nectar back to their hive and pass it to another worker bee. This bee continues the job by placing the nectar in a beeswax comb. The bees produce this wax through secretions from the nectar. The nectar sits in the beeswax comb and slowly forms into honey. Bees know all about teamwork, as each one will create a fraction of a teaspoon in their lifetime.