Q:

How do bees make their nests?

A:

A bee’s nest is called a hive and is constructed from beeswax, which is made out of honey. The honey is formed from nectar collected by worker bees. Bees store the honey in their stomachs and regurgitate it as beeswax. Inside the hive are hexagonal cells called honeycombs, which hold honey, nectar and pollen. After the first cell walls are completed, the queen bee lays eggs directly into the walls.

Bees select hive locations that are shielded from the cold and bad weather. They look for holes in trees, rock crevices or cavities in the ground. Bees crowd together in their hives to keep the temperature at a constant 85 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit, which is the temperature necessary for the queen to reproduce.

The purpose of the queen bee is to lay eggs and ensure the survival of the hive by producing thousands of children. A queen bee is chosen by the worker bees based on her size. Once the queen reaches adulthood, she will mate with 10 or more male bees.

After mating, the queen bee stores millions of sperm within her body, which she will retain for most of her lifespan. When she runs out stored sperm and can no longer reproduce, she is replaced by a new queen.


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