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Bees Wrap Review: A Plastic Wrap Alternative Brought to Your Kitchen by Bees

Bees

At its advent, plastic seemed to be a miracle; it can be shaped into nearly anything and created in a variety of ways to provide a plethora of potential uses. Our shoes, cars, Tupperware—many of the things we use daily rely on plastic. However, plastic is now known to have a negative impact on our environment and our health. The prevalence of plastic in our society and the need for plastic alternatives has prompted us to do a Bees Wrap review.

Bees Wrap replaces the all-too-disposable plastic wrap that has become essential for food preservation in most people's households. Not only do you avoid using plastic, but Bees Wrap is made from beeswax, so you are supporting an apiary with your purchase. By extension, you are supporting flowers and life as we know it on Earth.

Why do we need a product like Bees Wrap? For one, we have manufactured so much plastic that there is now plastic in the water. We have so much plastic in our water that we need to put filtered water into plastic bottles, which only ends up filling the earth with more plastic. This destructive cycle must be broken. Space in our landfills is not infinite, and plastic is not in the habit of biodegrading. That is why we are happy to present our Bees Wrap review.

In this review, we will present you with four solid alternatives to plastic wrap that rely on eco-friendly technologies. You may be surprised and impressed to learn nature can provide an answer to something so synthetic as plastic wrap.

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The Bees Wrap Review Process

After scouring the nearly infinite eco-friendly plastic wrap alternatives on the internet, we narrowed our list down to just Bees Wrap and three of its top competitors. Each of these competitors ought to help you draw a picture of what the eco-friendly alternative plastic wrap market has to offer.

For each item in our Bees Wrap review, we highlighted what makes the product special and then scored it according to our plastic wrap alternative criteria. Each entry was scored according to its price point, how easy it is to use, the design and material quality, efficacy, and what sort of warranty or guarantee is offered. Stick around until the end to learn how Bees Wrap compared to its competitors.

We will discuss each entry in turn and even link you to places where these items can be purchased, but first, let us answer some questions about the star of the show.

What Is Bees Wrap?

Bees Wrap is an eco-friendly alternative to plastic wrap, manufactured by the Bees Wrap Company. It is made using all-natural, sustainable, and renewable materials that primarily come from bees. This means that Bees Wrap is not only fun to use but also a safer alternative to traditional plastic wrap, as it will not impart synthetic chemicals to your food.

We were impressed that Bees Wrap is from a renewable source, especially because the individual sheets of Bees Wrap are reusable. You read that correctly; Bees Wrap provides a reusable solution to plastic wraps that have to be constantly purchased.

Sure, technically, some plastic wrap can be reused, but this seriously stretches the definition of the term. The plastic never seems to stretch the same after it has been pulled over a food item or plate. The second stretching almost always ends up sticking to itself, if it doesn't just disintegrate entirely.

Good luck trying to reuse plastic wrap that has covered a pie or a lasagna. You will almost certainly reach for a second sheet rather than attempt to clean the whipped topping or stringy cheese out of the plastic crimps and crevices.

But how can a product mostly made of beeswax act like plastic? The secret is in the palm of your hands—literally. You use the heat of your own hands to mold the Bees Wrap around the item you wish to preserve. Once it cools, the Bees Wrap keeps its shape.

You can easily use Bees Wrap to surround loose berries into a bag. You can create a barrier between your apple and the outside world. You can even use it to cover the tops of bowls like a one-size-fits-all Tupperware lid. The possibilities are nearly endless for replacing the plastic in your life.

To wash Bees Wrap, all you have to do is to run the dirty sheet under warm water and gently scrub it with a mild dish soap. After that, all you have to do is let the Bees Wrap air dry.

Product Specs

Bees Wrap is composed of organic cotton muslin, beeswax, jojoba oil, and tree resin. Both beeswax and jojoba oil convey antibacterial properties, meaning they naturally help your food stay fresh and your home to stay bacteria free. These properties elongate the life of the Bee's Wrap and the food you preserve with it.

Bees Wrap comes in two types of sets: a medium three-piece set which comes with 10-inch by 11-inch wraps, or a large three-piece set, which comes with 13-inch by 14-inch wraps that are more suited to whole lunches and bigger fruits.

Pricing

Bees Wrap can be purchased for around $18, depending on the size of the wraps you prefer. The bigger ones cost slightly more. The other alternatives to plastic wrap that use eco-friendly materials can usually be purchased for around the same price. These products cost about twice as much as a roll of plastic wrap, but they can end up saving you and the planet many rolls of plastic wrap down the line.

Compared to the price of Bees Wrap, some competitors asked slightly less for their product, while others asked slightly more. As such, we used the price of Bees Wrap as the median for our Bees Wrap review, giving it a price rating of $$. The products that asked a higher price received a price rating of $$$, and those which could be purchased for less than the cost of Bees Wrap received a price rating of $.

How It Compares

honeycomb

Image via Pixabay

For our Bees Wrap review, we chose three worthy competitors and rated each on a five-star scale in each category. The competitors featured in our Bees Wrap review include:

  • Eney Premium Beeswax Wraps
  • Homelux Theory Reusable Silicone Food Storage Bags
  • Envirogen Reusable Storage Bags

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Price: $$

  • Ease of Use
  • Effectiveness
  • Design Quality
  • Warranty

4/5 Stars

We found that Bees Wrap not only worked as well as plastic wrap, but in certain respects, it did better. Fruits wrapped in Bees Wrap lasted longer than those in plastic. It performed just as well when used for meats, but Bees Wrap states they do not recommend using their product for meat.


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If you thought Bees Wrap was an attractive item in an attractive package, wait until you see the Premium Beeswax Wraps provided by Eney. This product looked so good in an Etsy-like package, that we just had to include it as a competitor in this Bees Wrap review.

The Eney Premium Beeswax Wraps performs almost identically to Bees Wrap, as this technology is too old to be proprietary. One thing we love about Eney's beeswax wraps is that they can be repaired if you handle them a little too roughly and end up with a tear. Eney sells their own wax, which works perfectly to repair tears in their wraps.

While the concept of beeswax wraps that are easy to repair is appealing, we found this to be the undoing of the Eney Premium Beeswax Wraps. Why? It almost seems to be a conflict of interest. Can we trust a company who stands to profit every time their product fails? Maybe, but we prefer a product that doesn't cause us to ponder this question.

Everything you can do with Bees Wrap, you can do with Eney Premium Beeswax Wraps. The two products even sell for about the same price point. However, if you are looking for a longer-term solution to your plastic wrap woes, then Bees Wrap might offer longer durability.

Price $$

  • Ease of Use
  • Effectiveness
  • Design Quality
  • Warranty

5/5 Stars

We found that Eney Premium Beeswax Wraps were just as easy to use as the Bees Wrap we were comparing them against.


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The next competitor in our Bees Wrap review is Homelux Theory with their reusable silicone food storage bags. Silicon may not be the first substance you think of for sustainability, but it is one of the most abundant elements in the universe. Homelux Theory Reusable Silicone Food Storage Bags take advantage of this ubiquity to provide reusable, sealable food storage.

If you are looking for a reusable solution to constantly throwing away Ziplocks, this is a great option. Unlike Bees Wrap and the Eney Premium Beeswax Wraps, you do not have to shape the wax with your hands to have a usable food storage option. However, we missed the tactile experience of sculpting the Bees Wrap sheets.

Price $$$

  • Ease of Use
  • Effectiveness
  • Design Quality
  • Warranty

5/5 Stars

These reusable bags come with a shocking lifetime warranty. Try getting a lifetime warranty out of your Ziplocks!


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The last competitor in our Bees Wrap review is Envirogen. Envirogen offers their answer to Homelux Theory's Reusable Silicone Food Storage Bags in the form of reusable storage bags of their own. This product is not made with silicone, but with PEVA free from BPA, PVC, and lead.

Potentially, this works just as well as the silicone, and all our tests indicated that it is more or less equal to Homelux Theory's product in terms of food preservation. However, there is no telling when PEVA might be flagged as a potential health hazard for humans. After all, think about how long that BPA was used in our products.

Price $$$

  • Ease of Use
  • Effectiveness
  • Design Quality
  • Warranty

3/5 Stars

These do not come with a warranty, but they do come with a satisfaction guarantee.


Conclusion

Ultimately, when we considered price, ease, effectiveness, quality, and warranty, we have to award our “best of the best” to Bees Wrap. Few items look as good as it does, but even fewer items feel as good as Bees Wrap does. However, for reducing the amount of plastic floating in the ocean, all these products are winners.

Featured Image via Pexels

The 10 Best Beekeeping Books For Aspiring Apiarists

a stack of the books

​Whether you're setting up your first hive or you've spent years tending to bees and harvesting their honey, you need resources that you can turn to when you have a beekeeping question or encounter an obstacle. Connecting with other beekeepers is a great way to further develop your skills as an apiarist, and websites can help answer basic questions. The best beekeeping books, though, also play an important role in helping apiarists of all levels stay current. Our guide to the best beekeeping books for apiarists will help you settle on a few great additions to your library.

Comparison Table

Product FAQ

1. With So Much Information Available On The Internet, What Are The Advantages Of Using A Beekeeping Book?

The internet is filled with information about bees and beekeeping, and websites will likely serve as a resource for many apiarists. However, having a good book or two on bees is also important. Books, particularly lightweight ones, are great because you can take them with you when you're working with your hives, ensuring that you have a handy reference while out in the field and away from the internet. The best beekeeping books often are also more in-depth than many websites.

​2. Do Beekeeping Books Ever Become Outdated?

The best beekeeping books stand the test of time and rarely become outdated. Beekeeping relies on techniques and equipment that have been around for generations, so there's little chance that a beekeeping book will quickly become out of date.

3. What Should I Look For In A Bee Book?

​The best beekeeping books will answer the questions you have today and will also be advanced enough that you'll be able to turn to them for years to come. Because pictures and diagrams can help you understand the more complicated aspects of beekeeping and its equipment, it's also a good idea to look for an illustrated book. Finally, glance over any beekeeping book you're considering purchasing to make sure it's written in a style that is easy to understand and follow.

4. What Kinds Of Beekeeping Books Are Available?

book

​Image Source: www.amazon.com

​There are a wide variety of beekeeping books available. Some cover a broad range of bee topics, everything from the history of bees to how to set up and maintain a hive, and function primarily as handbooks.

Other bee books focus on the bees themselves, examining how the hive works and why bees swarm. Even others include publications that primarily serve as coffee table books. These books are heavy on color photographs and are geared less toward active beekeepers and more toward those who have a general appreciation for bees and other insects.

5. Why Do Some Bee Books Contain Recipe And Craft Information?

​Many beekeepers, particularly those new to beekeeping, often look for ways to put the honey and beeswax they produce to use. Many of the best beekeeping books, therefore, include a chapter of two featuring recipes and instructions for incorporating honey and beeswax into craft projects and household items such as candles and beauty supplies.

6. Are Most Beekeeping Books Aimed At Apiarists?

​Many of the best beekeeping books are aimed at apiarists with varying levels of experience, but apiarists aren't the only ones who enjoy and benefit from the best beekeeping books. Backyard gardeners, naturalists, and other nature lovers are among the other groups of individuals who gravitate toward bee books.

7. What's The Best Beekeeping Book For  A Beginning Apiarist?

book

​Image Source: www.amazon.com

If you're a beginning apiarist in search of a reference book, look for one that includes information about the basics of setting up a hive, maintaining it, and harvesting honey and beeswax. The best beekeeping books will also explain what equipment you'll need and how to use it. It's also a great idea to find a book that covers some basic information about the bees themselves, what their life cycle is, why they swarm, and how they function.

Armed with a better understanding of bees, you'll be more successful as a beekeeper. If you're a beginning apiarist, you may want to aim for finding two or three books that will collectively answer your questions and walk you through the process of establishing your hives.

How We Reviewed The Best Beekeeping Books

When evaluating the best beekeeping books, we took a range of factors into consideration, including the readability of the book and its comprehensiveness. Beekeeping books have varying degrees of scope. Some function as broad handbooks, while others drill down on specific aspects of bees and beekeeping. As we compiled our list of the best beekeeping books, we looked for publications that would be useful to apiarists of all levels of experience.

Overall Price Range Of The Best Beekeeping Books

The best beekeeping books range in price from $10 to $80, and can be found in physical bookstores or on online marketplaces like Amazon. The more expensive books tend to have more-comprehensive material, including detailed information about various types of bees and full-color photographs and diagrams.

What We Reviewed

  • ​The Beekeeper's Bible
  • ​The Backyard Beekeeper
  • The Beekeeper's Bible: Bee's, Honey, Recipes & Other Home Uses
  • Beginning Beekeeping: Everything You Need To Make Your Hive Thrive
  • ​Beekeeping For Dummies
  • ​The Bee Book
  • ​The Beekeeper's Problem Solver
  • ​The Bees in Your Backyard
  • Beginning Beekeeping: Everything You Need to Make Your Hive Thrive!
  • The Beekeeper's Handbook

The Beekeeper's Bible


Features

A beautifully illustrated book that covers a wide range of topics, The Beekeeper's Bible is considered a classic among apiarists. This 416-page book by Richard ones and Sharon Sweeney-Lynch covers the history of bees and beekeeping, the practicalities of beekeeping, and how to harvest honey and beeswax.

The Beekeeper's Bible also contains detailed instructions on how to use honey to make everything from candles and furniture polish to beauty products to baked goods and other cookery. This book, which is part-history book, part-beekeeper guide, and part-cookbook, is a great reference for apiarists of all skill levels. It also makes a great gift for those interested in beekeeping or conservation.

Where To Buy

This can be found in Amazon.

​The Backyard Beekeeper


Features

The Backyard Beekeeper is a great choice for beginning beekeepers. This 240-page book starts at the very beginning of the beekeeping process and spells out the details of caring for a hive in a practical, easy-to-follow format. The illustrated book ends with “25 Rules for Modern Beekeeping,” which on its own is a helpful resource. The Backyard Beekeeper is written by Kim Flottum, the longtime editor of Bee Culture magazine, where he answers questions of all stripes from beginning, intermediate, and advanced beekeepers.

This book is ideal for gardeners, apiarists, crafters, and cooks looking for ways to incorporate honey into recipes.

Price: $

Where To Buy

This can be found in Amazon.

The Beekeeper's Bible: Bee's, Honey, Recipes & Other Home Uses


Features

The Beekeeper's Bible: Bee's, Honey, Recipes & Other Home Uses, by Richard Jones, is about how to keep bees in a natural environment without the use of pesticides. This 670-page book is the first installment in a 3-volume series and is aimed at those who are new to natural beekeeping. The second and third books in this series also deal with natural beekeeping, but are aimed at apiarists with intermediate and advanced levels of experience.

This series advocates for a hands-off approach to keeping bees, and it presents techniques that have been refined over the years through experimentation and adjustments. It is ideal for beekeepers interested in a natural approach and in less conventional beekeeping techniques.

Price: $$

Where To Buy

This can be found in Amazon.

Beginning Beekeeping: Everything You Need To Make Your Hive Thrive


Features

Beginning Beekeeping: Everything You Need To Make Your Hive Thrive is a thoroughly researched book that dives into the topic of bees and what happens when they swarm. Written by animal behaviorist Thomas D. Seeley, this scientific book looks at the process that unfolds each year as colonies of bees select new homes and move into them.

Honeybee Democracy focuses less on beekeeping and more on the bees themselves. It makes a great gift for beekeepers and naturalists.

Price: $$

Where To Buy

This can be found in Amazon.

​Beekeeping For Dummies


Beekeeping For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyle))
  • Howland Blackiston
  • For Dummies
  • Kindle Edition

Features

Beekeeping For Dummies takes a humorous and straightforward approach to the subject of keeping bees. Written in the traditional “Dummies” style, this 480-page book is easy and fun to read, but it still thoroughly covers all aspects and details of beekeeping.

This book is ideal for beginning apiarists and for those who want a thorough introduction to beekeeping in an easy-to-read format.

Price: $

Where To Buy

This can be found in Amazon.

​The Bee Book


Features

The Bee Book, by DK Publishing, examines beekeeping, as well as topics like how to attract bees and which flowers to plant to extend honey production.

This 224-page book has exceptionally strong illustrations, including schematic drawings and diagrams, that walk readers through the process of establishing a hive and eventually harvesting it. In addition to practical beekeeping techniques, The Bee Book offers guidance on how to use honey and beeswax when making candles, beauty products, and other items. The visual aspects of this book make it equally suitable as a coffee table book.

Price: $$

Where To Buy

This can be found in Amazon.

​The Beekeeper's Problem Solver

The Beekeeper's Problem Solver: 100 Common Problems Explored and...
  • James E. Tew
  • Publisher: Quarry Books
  • Paperback: 224 pages

Features

As its name implies, The Beekeeper's Problem Solver is a practical book that addresses many of the common challenges and questions beekeepers have. This book, written by James E. Tew, takes on 100 different questions beekeepers may have and explores the underlying cause of each before offering a detailed answer.

This 224-page book is a useful resource for apiarists of all levels. Photos, diagrams, and useful tips make this a practical book to take with you when troubleshooting hive issues.

Price: $$

Where To Buy

This can be found in Amazon.

The Bees In Your Backyard


The Bees in Your Backyard: A Guide to North America's Bees
  • The Bees in Your Backyard A Guide to North America S Bees
  • Joseph S. Wilson, Olivia J. Messinger Carril
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press

Features

The Bees in Your Backyard is a 288-page coffee table book that documents the roughly 4,000 different species of bees in North America. The Bees in Your Backyard, written by Joseph S. Wilson and Olivia Messinger Carril, dispels many myths surrounding bees and beekeeping and offers tips for identifying the various types of bees. The book contains 900 full-color photographs of bees and gives detailed accounts of every bee family and genus.

This is a great choice for those who want a detailed reference guide or for those who appreciate a comprehensive collection of bee photographs. Whether someone's interested in beekeeping or just likes nature-watching, it makes a great gift.

Price: $$

Where To Buy

This can be found in Amazon.

Beginning Beekeeping: Everything You Need To Make Your Hive Thrive!


Features

The Beginning Beekeeping takes an almost-encyclopedic approach to everything you need to know about bees. With more than 900 pages and more than 1,000 photos, this book is a staple on the shelves of serious apiarists. Written by ALPHA and Tanya Phillips, this book covers honey bees, beekeeping, and beekeeping practices and equipment.

It is a handy reference book that apiarists of all levels will find useful. With a comprehensive overview of bee culture that not only describes practices, but also details the reasons for them, this book is ideal for anyone seriously considering beekeeping as a hobby or even business.

Price: $$$

Where To Buy

This can be found in Amazon.

The Beekeeper's Handbook


The Beekeeper's Handbook
  • Diana Sammataro, Alphonse Avitabile
  • Publisher: Comstock Publishing Associates
  • Edition no. 4 (05/13/2011)

Features

The Beekeeper's Handbook by Diana Sammataro and Alphonse Avitabile, examines the history and science behind the lost pastime of hunting bees. Although it offers a thorough treatment on the subject of bee hunting, this 184-page book also serves as a meditation on the beauty of the natural world. Much like The Bees in Your Backyard, Following the Wild Bees will be just as much of interest to those serious about hunting bees as to naturalists.

Price: $

This can be found in Amazon.

Where To Buy

The Verdict

​The Beekeeper's Bible is one of the best beekeeping books available. We loved this book for its beautiful illustrations and its comprehensive approach to a wide range of bee topics, including the history of bees, life in colonies, and the ins and outs of beekeeping. As a bonus, the final chapter of The Beekeeper's Bible includes information on how to incorporate honey and beeswax into home cooking and crafts. Easy to read and moderately-priced, this book is considered a classic among apiarists and is a great resource for beekeepers with all levels of experience.

How Long Do Bees Live? A Look At Their Life Span

How long do bees live? A few days, a few weeks? Even longer? Insects often have varying lifespans, so it is not always clear how long one lives, and this is no different for bees. Whether you've got a beehive in your back yard that you're keeping an eye on, are doing research for a project, or just have some genuine curiosity about our bee friends, you're in the right place. This article will cover everything from different types of bees and factors that can affect their lifespan to their main life stages. By the end, you should have all the buzz you need on bees and then some.

A Brief Look at Bees

In recent years, there has been some anxiety surrounding bees. Plain and simple, bees are an extremely important part of the world's ecosystem. They're so important, in fact, that the high rate of bee decline and their potential to become extinct in the near future could spell out disaster for all other life on earth. This is because bees – the honey bee specifically – are the world's most important pollinators. Without them, humans and animals would not have any of the food we need to survive. These foods include:

  • Honey
  • Tree fruits – apples, apricots, peaches, cherries, lines, plums, lemons
  • Other fruits – bananas, melons, mangos, grapes
  • Berries – strawberries, blackberries, cranberries
  • Onions
  • Avocados
  • Tea plants
  • Nuts – almonds, cashews, coconut
  • Seeds
  • Beans – green beans, lima beans, kidney beans
  • Vegetables – broccoli, cucumbers, cabbage, cauliflower
  • Chocolate
  • Sugarcane

With this in mind, we must know what is putting our bees at risk, how to help them, and what a normal, healthy lifespan looks like for these creatures.

Types of Bees

One answer to the “How long do bees live?” question is “It depends.” Certain factors can affect a bee's lifespan like the type of bee it is. Different bees have different functions, which means one's lifespan might differ from another's depending upon what the bee does.

Honey Bee

Honey bees in thier hiveVia Pixabay

Honey bees are known as “superorganisms” due to their well-organized and highly efficient colonies. In fact, a honey bee colony can be made up of between 50,000-60,000 bees, all with their different roles to keep the hive running. There are several types of honey bee with different functions, and each may have a different lifespan. What's more, the time of year a honey bee is born can also affect how long the bee lives. For example, worker bees born in the spring and summer usually have shorter but busier lives, while bees born in autumn have longer, albeit harsher, lives due to their having to endure the winter. Here's a breakdown of each type of honey bee.

Queen Honey Bee

A healthy queen honey bee could live for 4 or 5 years, so long as she is free from disease and living in a safe environment. Since the queen is highly favored amongst the colony, she is always protected, which helps extend her lifespan even more. However, if a honey bee queen is no longer favored by the colony, she may be removed by the worker bees. When this happens, a new queen is produced, and the old queen is replaced in a process called “supersedure.”

Worker Bee

The lifespan of a worker honey bee is dependent on the season in which they are born. Worker bees born and raised during the spring or summer can live for 6-7 weeks. These weeks are usually incredibly busy as the workers are fitted with a variety of tasks. They have to feed larvae, produce honeycomb, collect nectar and pollen, and feed the colony at large.

Worker honey bees born and raised in the autumn, however, do not have to care for larvae since the queen stops producing eggs during this time. During the autumn and winter months, then, worker bees usually huddle around the queen to keep her warm. They stay this way until they are ready to emerge in the spring to begin foraging for food, nectar, and pollen. In total, worker bees born during the latter half the year can live between 4 and 6 months.

Drone Bee

Drone honey bees are known to live for up to 4 months. On the lower end of the lifespan, however, they can survive for just a few weeks. Drones are the bees responsible for mating with the queen to produce more eggs. After mating with the queen, drones immediately die.

Bumble Bee – Differences

Bumble bee on a white flowerVia Pixabay

It is important to note that bumblebees differ from honey bees in a few key ways: appearance, temperament, longevity, and nest/colony location. Let's run through the differences:

Appearance

While honey bees are more slender, have little body hair, and have translucent wings, bumblebees are much larger and more “robust” in appearance. They have more hairs on their bodies, are usually colored yellow, orange, and black, and have thicker, darker wings. The tip of their abdomen is also rounded while the abdomen of a honey bee is pointed.

Temperament

While both honey bees and bumblebees are not overly aggressive, both will sting to defend themselves and their colony. The biggest difference is that a honey bee will sting only once (and usually die immediately after) while a bumblebee can sting multiple times; so watch out!

Longevity

While a honey bee queen can live for 4 or 5 years, that is not the case with bumblebee queens. These queens typically live for just one year.

Nest/Colony Location

If you see a hive above ground, chances are you're looking at a honey bee colony. Bumblebees tend to make their nests underground. While some do nest above ground, bumblebees most commonly live at ground level.

Bumblebee Types

A bumble bee on yellow flowerVia Pixabay

Queen Bumble Bee

A queen bumble bee will spend part of her year-long life in hibernation. New queens usually emerge during the late summer or early autumn and will complete their full lifespan if disease, predators, or pesticides do not bring harm. After emerging, the queen will mate and feed to store fat for the winter.

Worker Bumble Bee

The lifespan of a worker bumblebee can last anywhere between two to six weeks. The length of life depends on the species, but other factors may come into play as well. Like honey bees, when the bee is born can play a role in how long or short their lifespan is. In addition to that, most worker bumblebees with nest duties tend to live longer than those who are tasked with foraging. This is because these bumblebees are more exposed to predators, weather conditions, and human interference.

Of course, bumblebees are equipped to withstand most conditions. They do not sting unless provoked, which can help them fight off predators. If they are caught in the rain or heat, they may need a quick rest or a drink of water before going about their business. If a human gets in the way, they may be able to defend themselves with their stingers or avoid the threat altogether.

How Long Do Bees Live?

So, how long do bees live? The answer is anywhere from two weeks to five years, depending on the type of bee and its role in life. But, what about the natural life cycle of a bee? All bees, whether drone, worker, or queen, go through four key stages. These key stages are the egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Let's take a look at them in a bit more depth.

The Stages of a Bee's Lifespan

A dying bee on a black backgroundVia Pixabay

Egg

A bee's life begins when its egg is laid and hatched by the queen. During this life stage, the digestive system, nervous system, and outer covering of the bee are formed. Each type of bee has a different timeline between hatching and adulthood. For queens, the process takes 16 days. Drones develop in under 24 days while worker bees need 21 days total.

It is important to note that queens will lay over 2,000 eggs each day. However, not every egg is fertilized. Fertilized eggs will produce worker bees while non-fertilized eggs develop into drones.

Larvae

Three days after hatching, the larvae stage begins. Larvae are identifiable by their white color and nearly minuscule size. Over a couple of weeks, the larvae grow and shed their skin more than five times. This happens because of how quickly they are growing and eating (they consume over 1300 meals in a day!). Larvae are raised on a diet of royal jelly and “bee bread” (a mixture of honey and pollen). Though it takes them a few weeks to grow out of this stage, in just five days, a larva will have grown ten times its size. Once a certain size has been reached, the larva is then sealed in beeswax by a worker bee where it will spin itself a cocoon to develop into an adult.

Pupa

The pupa is the stage of the cocooned larvae. During this time, the eyes, legs, and wings are starting to develop and take shape. For example, the eyes are first pink, then purple, and then they become the black we are all familiar with. Finally, they grow hair over their bodies and increase in size until they are strong enough to chew their way out of the cocoon.

Adult

After about 12 days in the pupa stage, an adult bee will chew its way out of its cocoon and emerge. From here, the bee will either be a new queen, a worker, or a drone and live out the life allotted to it.

So, there you have it: four key stages, various types of bees, and tons of tasks to finish in a quick but jam-packed lifespan. Remember, we must protect our bee friends since they are at risk now more than ever. If you come across a bee, remember that if you do not bother it, it won't bother you!

The Buzz-Worthy Guide To Creating Your Own Paradise With Bee-Friendly Plants

Find bee-friendly plants for your garden


There's no sweeter sound to any gardener's ear than the contented buzzing of pollen-happy bees as they flit from flower to flower. Luckily, bee-friendly plants prove to be some of the easiest flowers to find and grow. 

That buzz is music to our ears -- knowing that we're supporting pollinating insects while creating a flower-filled paradise in our yard. 

And in exchange for providing a host of beautiful and delicious flowers for our little bee-buds, they return the favor by pollinating our vegetables and fruits as well.  

If you also plant fruit trees or have a vegetable garden, just adding some bee-friendly plants nearby can increase your harvest yield by up to 24 percent!

What You Need to Know About Bee-Friendly Plants

You may have heard about the alarming drop in the worldwide bee population. The good news is that honeybee populations are starting to recover.

But native bees -- like bumblebees -- also benefit when you add bee-friendly plants to your garden. 

Most bee-friendly plants are easy to grow because they're native to the region. As well as ensuring that you'll be able to create a successful bee garden, using native plants also ensures that you you won't have to spend a lot of time and money coddling them. 

Sunflowers are some of the easiest bee-friendly plants for the home garden.

Image CC0 via Pixabay

If you want to increase your garden harvest, support your local native bees and honeybees, and add beauty and drama to your landscape, consider adding bee-friendly plants and native flowers to your garden. 

Why are native plants better for creating a pollinator garden that attracts bees, butterflies, and even hummingbirds? 

Let's find out.

The Relationship Between Bees and Flowers

Your local bees have learned to love the native plants where they live. Over the many generations, they've have adapted to seeking them out for pollen. 

Nature is filled with give-and-take relationships, known as symbiotic relationships. We see examples of these relationships in clownfish and sea anemones, cattle and birds, and most importantly, bees and flowers.

Flowering plants rely on bees and other pollinators to reproduce. 

Without bees to pollinate flowers, produce fruit, and eventually seed, the plants would simply die off.

Bee-friendly plants in a garden

Image CC0 via Pixabay

However, this relationship isn't one-sided! 

Bees rely on pollen and nectar, collected from various bee-friendly plants, to survive.

If bees don't collect these nutrients from various flowers, their hive will run out of food and eventually cease to exist.

Pollen is the yellow powder released from a plant's male flowers. This substance is needed to pollinate the plant's female flowers.

bee on a flower planted with bee friendly plants

Add bee-friendly plants to your garden. Image CC0 via Pixabay.

Some flowers have both male and female parts -- the stamen and pistil. But many rely on bees to transfer the pollen from one flower to another.

And while some of this pollen is brushed off on other flowers to pollinate them, bees do keep some of it for themselves. After all, pollen makes excellent food for bee larvae.

So we now understand the role pollen plays in this relationship.

But what is nectar?

Nectar is a sweet liquid produced by many flowering plants. For the plants, nectar serves no other purpose than to attract pollinators to its flowers. Essentially, nectar is a sugary bribe.

bees in a hive

Bees store food for the hive in their honeycomb. Image CC0 via Pixabay

Bees store nectar in their stomachs and carry it back to their hive. Then, they deposit the nectar into honeycomb cells, and the honey-making process begins.

If you've ever wondered why a hive's honey tastes different depending on which flowers the bees feed on, this is why!

How do bees and flowers communicate?

Obviously, bees are attracted to flowers because they provide delicious nectar.

But this isn't the full story:

Have you ever wondered how bees find flowers in the first place? Or why they prefer certain flowers in your garden over others?

Knowing the answers to these questions is essential to growing your own bee-friendly plants.

Sunflower on a sunlight with bee friendly plants

Sunflowers are one of the most popular bee-friendly plants. Image via Pixabay

Believe it or not, bees and flowers communicate in ways invisible to the human eye.

First, let's look at how different bee-friendly plants communicate with these pollinators!

Flowers use changing colors, patterns, and scents to attract bees. Many flowers use ultraviolet wavelengths, which are invisible to the human eye but act like a vibrant bulls-eye for foraging bees.

bee flying and attracted to flower scents

Image CC0 via Pixabay

Flower shapes also play a role in pollination. The most bee-friendly plants offer flowers with an open or tubular shape. If a bee can't get to the flower's pollen and nectar, it will continue on its journey without stopping.

Bees also communicate with flowers.

For instance, check out how this bumblebee's vibrations prompt a flower to open:

But bees don't just benefit flowers.

These pollinators are also a vital part of keeping our environment diverse and thriving. Bees are also critical for the agricultural industry.

Why We Need Bees and Other Pollinators

While there are countless insects, birds, and other animals that act as pollinators, bees are by far the most important.

Bees pollinate more varieties of flowers than any other pollinator on earth.

But these insects aren't just essential to the bee-friendly plants in your garden. They also help pollinate most of the world's agricultural crops.

Man wearing protector shield extracting honey from a beehive

Beekeeping supports our crops. Image CC0 via Pixabay

According to the US Department of Agriculture, one in three foods we eat is the direct or indirect result of bee pollination.

The plants we eat rely on this pollination in two ways: to reproduce (creating more plants for harvest) and to produce fruit. Just take a look at some of the most common agricultural crops that rely on bees for pollination:

In recent years, honey bees and other pollinators have been responsible for up to $19 billion worth of annual crop pollination.

bees help farmers make money for a living

Image CC0 via Pixabay

In fact, many farmers have started maintaining beehives on the outskirts of their land to ensure adequate pollination. Others hire hives to come to their land and pollinate their crops.

And with around 80-percent of wild plants relying on these bees for survival, we aren't the only living creatures who need the bees to ensure our food supply.

80%
of wild flora relies   on bees

Where are the bees going?

Unfortunately, our bee population had been dropping for several decades.

There are a variety of reasons for this decline, but most experts say the following are the primary causes:

  • Colony Collapse Disorder
  • Insecticides
  • Parasites and disease
  • Climate change

But, regardless of why the world's bee population is declining, the average gardener can plant bee-friendly plants to help them recover and thrive. 

Because without these pollinating powerhouses, home gardens and large farms won't be able to produce enough food. 

Lavender is a sweet-smelling bee-friendly plant

Image via Pixabay

And while there may not much the home gardener can do about commercial agriculture, there's no reason we can't pick up some of the slack. Especially when it's so easy and adds so much beauty and color to our yards.

Imagine how many bees we could support if every home added bee-friendly plants to their landscape! 

Home gardeners can still offer a huge helping hand to their local bee colonies.

All they need to do is add flower beds, especially those filled with nature's more bee-friendly plants.

400%
Can improve bee colony survival

By providing native flowering, bee-friendly plants to your garden or landscaping beds, you can help keep the local bee population going strong. And that means both honeybees and native bees!

And by planting a variety of species that flower throughout the spring, summer, and fall, you'll ensure that these essential pollinators never go without a good meal.

How to Create Your Own Bee-Friendly Plant Garden

When it comes to flowers, bees aren't very fussy. And that makes the chore of creating your own bee-friendly garden an extremely easy one!

In most cases, choosing a few bee-friendly plants is all it takes to draw local bees to your garden.

But for the most effective pollinator garden, we recommend following a few general guidelines:

pollinator garden with bee friendly plants

Pollinator garden with bee-friendly plants like coneflower. Image by USDA, CC by 2.0, via Flickr

Choosing a location

When choosing the location for your bee-friendly plants, you have to take into consideration the needs of your chosen plants. But you also have to pick somewhere that will attract the most bees.

To do that, you'll need to think like a bee.

You want at least part of your bee garden to be covered by shade during the day. If part of your garden has tree cover or other shelter, this will also help protect visiting bees from heavy rain.

On top of choosing the best general location for your garden, the placement of your bee-friendly plants is also important.

flowers that are planted in an organized clusters to attract more bees

Image CC0 via Pixabay

The best strategy is to plant your chosen flowers in organized clusters. That allows your bee visitors to indulge in — and more efficiently pollinate — one type of flower with ease.

Some bee species will bounce between different varieties of flowers. Others, though, prefer to feed on only one type at a time.

Scattering your flowers might look more aesthetically pleasing if you're going for that wild-grown look, but it also means that these selective bees can't feed or pollinate as efficiently.

If their flowers of choice are too far apart, they may even return to the hive without getting their fill of nectar.

a yellow with black stripes honeybee

Image CC0 via Pixabay

Providing shelter

At the very least, you want to have a covered space in your bee-friendly plant garden that offers temporary shelter from the wind and rain.

But that's not all you can do!

Avoid mulching around your bee-friendly plants. Or at least leave some spots of bare soil uncovered.

Many native bee species, including the adorable bumblebee, burrow into the ground to nest. If your entire garden is covered in mulch, these bees won't be able to get the most out of your bee-friendly plants.

honeybee hive with bumblebee inside

Image CC0 via Pixabay

If you must mulch your entire pollinator garden, consider leaving out some empty pots of soil or dirt.

These pots will provide shelter for burrowing bees in your garden. Just remember to place them somewhere that won't get soaked from rain or sprinklers.

Another option is to invest in some wooden bee houses. Old, untreated logs or lumber you have lying around can also serve as excellent makeshift shelters for nesting bees.

Of course, once you have your garden in place, you should check any of these structures for inhabitants before moving pots, dumping soil, or making any other changes that could harm your resident bees.

Offering water

Many eco-conscious gardeners overlook a key piece of caring for their local bees: water!

While bees rely on the flowers of bee-friendly plants for pollen and nectar, they also drink plain old water. And this resource can be difficult to find, especially in dry months.

So what can you do?

If you already have a birdbath in or near your pollinator-friendly garden, then you'll probably see bees and other insects taking advantage of this convenient water source.

a bee drinking in a source of fresh water

Bees need a source of fresh water. Image CC0 via Pixabay

But if you don't already have standing water nearby, you should keep a bowl of water in your garden.

To create a bee water bowl, pick out a shallow dish that you don't mind keeping outside. Before filling the dish with water, add pebbles and rocks of varying sizes until it's about half-full.

From here, you can add water to the bowl. But don't completely submerge the rocks!

Your resident bees will use these dry rocks to safely drink from the bowl — without risk of drowning.

a resident bee is safely drinking from a bowl of water

Image CC0 via Pixabay

Caring for your garden

Caring for your bee-friendly plants is pretty much the same as any other garden. But there is one critical thing to remember:

No insecticides!

Hopefully, you already avoid using insecticides in your garden or use an organic alternative. But if you do use these chemicals, now is the time to stop.

Insecticides might prevent infestation from harmful insects like aphids and leafcutters, but they can also hurt or kill entire bee colonies.

You should avoid using chemical insecticide on your bee-friendly plants. But we also encourage you to reconsider using these chemicals on any of your flowering plants.

If you're in search of an insect-repellent than won't harm your local bees, you do have some options.

Here are some of our favorite alternatives to chemical insecticides and the pests they work against the best:

Products

Insects / Pests

Neem oil

aphids, spider mites, powdery mildew

Epsom salt

slugs, snails, beetles

Aluminum foil

(wrapped around the plant's stem) 

aphids

Essential oils

bees and butterflies

Garlic

aphids, ants, white flies, caterpillars

Our favorite thing about these natural pest-control options is that they act as repellants rather than poisons. So you can keep pests away from your bee-friendly plants without causing any actual harm to them.

Before using any insecticide or pesticide on your bee-friendly plants, even if it is labeled as natural or organic, we recommend researching the ingredients first.

After all, the last thing you want to do is inadvertently hurt your local bee colony.

The Best Bee-Friendly Plants for Your Garden

We've finally come to the fun part of starting a pollinator garden -- choosing the best bee-friendly plants.

One of the most important tenets of creating a bee-friendly garden is choosing plants that will bloom in succession. The goal is to keep a steady supply of pollen and nectar available throughout spring, summer, and fall.

While most of these bee-friendly plants do just fine in a wide variety of climates, we recommend checking your area's hardiness zone before going out and buying a supply of seeds or transplants.

If you find that your geographical region is either too cold or too hot for most of the flower varieties we've listed below, we suggest reaching out to a regional university's horticulture or agriculture program. Or even a local gardening club.

With help from one of these organizations, you should be able to find native, bee-friendly plants better suited to your local climate.

That said, let's get started!

bee friendly plants like cosmos attract many beneficial insects to your yard

Cosmos are a favorite bee-friendly plant. Image CC0 via Pixabay

Spring

For bees, the start of spring means preparing for the next generation.

And here's what that means:

After a long winter, bees need to collect plenty of pollen and nectar to replenish their hive supplies. Or, if they're a solitary species, they need to replace personal energy lost during the winter.

They'll also need more water than usual to liquefy thickened honey.

Toward the end of spring, young worker bees will be entering the field for the first time!

During the spring, your local bee colonies will be out in full force collecting tons of valuable pollen and honey.

In this important time of year for colony development, what bee-friendly plants can you keep in your garden?

Crocuses are bee friendly plants emerge on early spring

Image CC0 via Pixabay

The crocus is an extremely dainty flower that is one of the first to emerge after winter's frost has dissipated.

With strong scents and a range of colors, these bee-friendly plants draw bees out from their winter slumber. And with a bloom that sits somewhere between an open and tubular shape, these flowers are the perfect size and shape for foraging bees.

Here's how to grow them:

  1. Crocuses grow from corms, a type of bulb and will return year after year. For the best results, plant crocus corms in your garden a few weeks before your area's first expected frost.
  2. If you choose to mulch your garden, you'll need to remove it in the early spring or late winter if you want your crocus sprouts to break through the soil. You can also spread crocuses in a blanket across your yard for a beautiful burst of spring color.
  3. These bee-friendly plants are hardy in Zone 3 through Zone 8. However, different varieties may have different temperature tolerances.
Lilacs are favorites for bees and gardeners alike

Image CC0 via Pixbay

Lilacs are bee-friendly plants that make great shrubbery for any landscape.

These fragrant flowers draw in all types of pollinators from far and wide. But bees are particular fans of the lilac. Since lilacs bloom in large clusters, bees can easily bounce from blossom to blossom as they collect pollen and nectar.

Take a look at what you can do with this plant:

  1. The most common type of lilac bush blooms in mid-to-late May, making it one of the best bee-friendly plants for late spring.
  2. Most lilac bushes grow between 5 and 15 feet tall. We recommend planting these bushes as a backdrop to your garden or along your house.
  3. Lilac bushes are hardy in Zone 3 through Zone 8. But some varieties of these bee-friendly plants can survive into Zone 2 and Zone 9.
Bees like roses as they produce large quantities of nectar

Single petal rose. Image CC0 via Pixabay

Roses technically toe the line between a spring and a summer bloomer.

But since most of these bee-friendly plants bloom closer to the end of spring, they can help bridge the gap between crocuses and lilacs and the strong summer bloomers.

Bees love roses because they produce large quantities of decadent nectar.

However, remember this:

The most important thing about using roses as one of your bee-friendly plants is choosing the right varieties.

Bees prefer roses with open petals that are easy to land on

Double Petal Rose - Image CC0 via Pixabay

However, remember this:

The most important thing about using roses as one of your bee-friendly plants is choosing the right varieties.

  1. Roses come in a range of shapes. But when we think of a rose flower, we normally think of double-petal varieties.
  2. However, these dense clusters of petals are extremely difficult for most bees to penetrate. Instead, you want to plant single-petal varieties that offer a nice, open bloom.
  3. Roses are great bee-friendly plants because there are so many different cultivars. We recommend visiting your local nursery or garden center to find the best rose bush for your particular climate

Summer

Once the heat of summer hits, your resident bees will need plenty of water to maintain their own body temperatures as well as the temperature of their hives.

In addition to keeping themselves cool, the local bee colonies will also start thinking about winter. That means collecting as much pollen and nectar as they possibly can.

Fortunately, summer offers plenty of bee-friendly plants to include in your garden.

Bee balm is one of the best bee friendly plants that blooms in the summer

Image CC0 via Pixabay

As the name implies, bee balm is one of the best bee-friendly plants for summer.

Growing this North American woodland plant is easy:

  1. The blossoms of these bee-friendly plants look like a cross between wild honeysuckle and daisies. You can find different shades of bee balm in pinks, yellows, and white. But the most popular color is vibrant purple.
  2. Picking spent blossoms from your bee balm plants will help encourage further flower production.
  3. Since bee balm is a member of the mint family, you might even notice a fresh, clean fragrance filling your garden during the summer months!
  4. Bee balms do best in Zone 4 through Zone 6. But most varieties can survive in up to Zone 9 with proper care.
Lavender is a fragrant flower that is one of the most bee friendly plants around

Image CC0 via Pixabay

According to a two-year study, lavender blooms are actually one of the most bee-friendly plants around!

Here's why:

  1. These super fragrant flowers might look too small for the average bee to access, but they are actually just right.
  2. And since lavender grows in clusters, bees can effectively bounce from plant to plant with relative ease.
  3. The most important thing when growing lavender is to not overwater it. While these plants are extremely drought-tolerant, they can succumb to overly moist soil.
  4. Most lavender plants are only hardy from Zone 5 through Zone 9. But more cold-resistant varieties of these bee-friendly plants are being developed as we speak!
Sunflowers large blooms attract bumblebees with its tons of nectar

Image CC0 via Pixabay

The sunflower is a classic backyard garden addition. But these over-sized yellow flowers are also great bee-friendly plants during the summer.

The sunflower's large blooms offer tons of nectar for hungry bees and other pollinators.

There are two types of sunflower you can plant in your garden: annual and perennial. While perennial varieties will come back every summer, they won't actually bloom until at least their second year.

Sunflowers are a great option for backyard gardeners who want to utilize more bee-friendly plants in their landscaping.

But be aware:

  1. These large plants can choke out other flowers. Make sure that you leave enough room between each of your sunflowers and between your sunflowers and other bee-friendly plants in your garden!
  2. Since, traditionally, sunflowers are annuals, they don't have a hardiness zone designation from the USDA.
Blackeyed Susans are loved by honeybees and native bees

Image CC0 via Pixabay

As far as bee-friendly plants are concerned, black-eyed Susans are some of the most foolproof.

You might also see these wildflowers marketed under the names Gloriosa daisy or brown-eyed Susan.

Look how easy this plant is to grow:

  1. These bright yellow flowers bloom throughout the entire summer and are extremely tolerant of heat and drought. They are also self-seeding and thrive in all types of soil.
  2. The coloring on these flowers attracts all types of bees — but especially honeybees — and the blooms provide plenty of nectar throughout the summer months.
  3. Black-eyed Susans even extend into fall with some blooming through October!
  4. If you want to grow these bee-friendly plants in your own garden, you're in luck. Black-eyed Susans thrive anywhere from Zone 3 through Zone 9.

Fall

As the summer months draw to a close and temperatures slowly drop, winter is on everyone's mind.

This includes the bees.

While bees spend summer collecting tons of pollen and nectar for their winter food stores, some will continue collecting into fall.

To help out these last-minute foragers, you can plant one of the bee-friendly plants below!

Stonecrop flower blooms in the fall

Image CC0 via Pixabay

Until very recently, the stonecrop flower was known as a type of sedum.

But not anymore:

  1. While the name has technically changed, you will probably see these bee-friendly plants marketed under both names!
  2. These plants are succulents, meaning they do well in hot and dry conditions.
  3. The most popular type of stonecrop, Autumn Joy, is a great addition to any pollinator garden.
  4. Since these bee-friendly plants bloom from late August to November, they help fill the gap between summer and winter for your resident bees.
  5. Whether you opt for a tall, bushy variety of stonecrop or one that blankets over rocks and soil, these plants offer carpets of bee-friendly flowers.
  6. Most stonecrop plants are hardy from Zone 4 to Zone 9. Autumn joy, though, is also hardy in Zone 3.
Goldenrod attracts bees and other pollinators

Image CC0 via Pixabay

Goldenrod has a bad reputation:

  1. Somehow, goldenrod has developed a reputation for triggering hay fever in allergy-prone individuals. However, this meadow flower is actually hypoallergenic!
  2. Instead, the culprit is the very similar-looking ragweed.
  3. Many home gardeners avoid using this flower in their garden because of this wives' tale. But goldenrod is actually one of fall's best bee-friendly plants.
  4. Most varieties of goldenrod begin blooming in July or August and continue into October.
  5. Since goldenrod is native to North America, you can find varieties to suit pretty much any climate. Goldenrod thrives in Zone 2 through Zone 8.

Help Nurture Nature with Bee-Friendly Plants

As you can see, creating a pollinator garden is as simple as choosing a handful of bee-friendly plants and planting them in the ground!

Bees pollinating on blackberry blossoms

Image CC0 via Pixabay

Since most bees are attracted to native wildflowers and other reliable bloomers, growing these flowers is extremely easy and low-maintenance.

Even if you live in a particularly hot or cold climate, there are several bee-friendly plants that will thrive in your respective hardiness zone.

And drawing in pollinators with these bee-friendly plants can help attract bees and even butterflies to your fruit and vegetable crops or other garden flowers.

Adding shelter and water to your garden, as well as avoiding the use of chemical insecticides, will help ensure that your resident bees' needs are met. This will help them feel safe and comfortable returning to your garden throughout the year.

Plus, if you work to include a wide range of bee-friendly plants that bloom at different times of the year, your pollinator garden will offer a steady supply of pollen and nectar throughout your region's bees' entire active season.

So, now that you know the ins-and-outs of creating your own bee-friendly garden, are you ready to create a pollinator paradise in your own backyard? 

Maybe the next step will even be raising your own hive! 

Featured Image: CC0 via Pixabay

How Far Do Bees Travel: What You Need to Know About Foraging

How far do bees travel when collecting pollen and nectar?

If you keep honeybees, you're probably concerned that your hive will be able to find enough forage nearby to produce enough honey for you to harvest. Even if you're simply planning a flower garden full of bee-friendly plants, you're probably wondering how far do bees travel when foraging for nectar and pollen.

People have valued a wide range of bee species for their role in the pollination of crops and the production of honey and beeswax. Beekeepers want to keep their hives healthy and fed with enough forage to produce enough honey to harvest.

So, you'll want to know their flying range when searching for nectar so you can ensure they have adequate forage in the local area. You'll need to know how far do bees travel so you'll be confident they'll find enough food in the local flora. If not, you'll want to plant plenty of bee-friendly plants and flowers to support your hive.

How Far Do Bees Travel When Foraging

It's important to understand the migration and travel patterns of bees if you plan on beekeeping or gardening in support of your local bee population. Bees have a critical impact on local agriculture and plant life. And in return, your local flora and farms influence the health and production of your bees.

Some bees are experts at pollinating specific flora and fauna better than others. And like most living creatures, they also have their preferences when it comes to their meals.

Some of the different types of bees you'll see in your local area include the following.

  • Honeybees
  • Carpenter Bees
  • Bumblebees
  • Blueberry Bees
  • Mason bees

If you're curious about how far do bees travel, you might be in for a surprise. Depending on the type of bee and its reasons for flying out, the travel distance varies. For example, bumblebees have traveled distances ranging from 330 feet to up to a mile.

how far do bees travel
Image CC0 via Pexels

The Amazing Honeybee

Honeybees will usually travel between half a mile to as much as 3.75 miles to scout out plants to forage. However, some people have recorded them flying as far as over 8.25 miles during their journey for nectar.

We can recognize the honeybee by its signature buzz, which is caused by a wingstroke rate of 200 beats per second. The honeybee can also travel at speeds of up to 15 miles per hour.

However, when you're considering how far do bees travel for food, it's usually not that far. Most honeybees want to stay close to their hive. It's also important to remember that, when traveling, not all bee types are proficient at pollinating every kind of flower or plant that they encounter.

how far do bees travel
Image CC0 via Pixabay

Human Threats to Bees and Their Travel Plans

When researching how far do bees travel for food, it helps to be aware of some external factors in play. Some human activities can grossly interfere with their range.

The widespread use of pesticides that contain neonicotinoids in commercial nurseries can disrupt their natural patterns and behavior, as well as their ability to forage efficiently. One curious effect of our impact is that the presence of Wi-Fi, cellphone towers, and EMF from human technology can cause debilitating harm to bee populations.

Radiation and electric waves damage and interfere with the bees' natural compass. This interference makes it very challenging for them to travel correctly or safely.

Bees pollinate about a third of the plants we consume. So, any disruption or disappearance of bee populations can send shockwaves throughout the food chain and environment. And this, of course, includes our own agricultural landscape and food supply.

In order to plan ahead for your hive's health and welfare, you should be know how far do bees travel when foraging. Do an extensive survey of your nearby flora and farms for potential food sources. In that way, you'll know whether you should increase the number of pollinator plants on your property. In some cases, you may even want to provide a bee-feeder to supplement their diet.

 

Feature Image: CC0 via Pixabay