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So I wasn't even supposed to write about this topic. But with Mother's Day fast approaching, this is the best time of the year to talk about it. Every colony of honeybees has one Queen Bee. But to be specific, each hive has three types of honeybees: A Queen, Workers, and Drones. The Drones are the boy bees and do nothing but eat honey, and mate with queens from other hives (upon completion of mating, this unfortunate boy bee dies as his genitals are ripped off by the queen. No worries, it's natural). Drones pretty much suck. They can't even sting. The worker bees are all girl bees, are all sisters, and are all daughters of the their mom......The Queen.
I apologize as I must stick to the abbreviated version of 'All about the Queen Bee'. The queen is critically important to the colony. She dictates how the colony acts,what they do and when, is responsible for their temperament, and is responsible for the continuity of the colony's generations to come. She communicates via pheromone, which is through smell.
There are numerous situations under which a colony produces their next queen, and when this happens there are sometimes several queens preparing to hatch. But since there can only be one queen per hive, the first queen to hatch will attempt to kill the others.
During the spring, the queen decides that it is time to reproduce the actual colony. So she sends out scouts to search for a new home. Then she takes half of the hive and swarms to their new home. The old home goes to the new queen of which eggs the old queen laid about 5 days before she left.
Really, I could go on and on, but check out this video I took of a queen hatching. Her body is longer than the other bees, and is towards the middle. Can you spot her hatching and making her way deeper into the hive? Click Here.