Here at the Museum, we have an exhibit beehive where the honey bees (Apis mellifera) are free to come and go as they please since the hive entrance is connected by a tube to a hole in a glass window. When you look at the hive, you're seeing mostly worker bees, which are all females. Honey bees are famous, of course, for producing honey--but, did you know that about one third of our food crops, including almonds, apples and soybeans to name a few, are pollinated by honeybees?:
So what can you do to help? Try making your yard "bee friendlier" by using less pesticides, or by planting native plants that will help sustain bees with nectar and pollen. I know a lot of people are extremely allergic to bee stings (including myself!) and many people are afraid of bees because of this. But, in the grand scheme of nature, bees are very important to the ecosystem and essential for the pollination of many food crops, so I hope we can "bee" appreciative of this small natural wonder. More "off the beaten path" in two weeks...