Honey Bees Love To Dance – Astor Apiaries

Honey Bees Love To Dance

As children, many of us might have deemed bees as dumb, evil, victims of their own caprice, and incapable of doing anything sensible and well calculated. All they ever seem to do anyways is attack the innocent with their little stings, deprive angelic flowers of their nectar, harvest selfish amounts of honey, and hum a noisome tune when moving from one place to the other. Not only did this speculation end its existence in the confines of childhood but the roots extended even into the lodges of adulthood. Well, beekeepers seem to be off-key in this worldwide song against bees, and with their devoted quality time with these misunderstood fellows, the world gets to reorganize its orchestra. To our amazement, bees are smart little dancers that can sweep one off of their feet!

Photo by Kai Wenzel on Unsplash

 Why Do Bees Dance?

Language is like a key to a door tightly sealed. Without it, we could never know what the next person is trying to convey and painfully, we would never have a means of expressing our feeling! That’s such a heart wrecking reality hey? An important factor to note is, the importance of language actually isn’t limited to the human race only but it extends even to the most trifling of the creatures on the Earth. So how then do bees communicate? The answer is, they dance. YES, they have dance-offs for a language. How unique! This is pure evidence that language is not restricted to words only but it’s an entire complex of dynamics all meant to reach the same destination. Well, they do say all roads lead home. So, for bees, since they don’t have the intricacies of melodies and voice boxes hanging down their throats like a chandelier, their minute intelligent brains took advantage of the statement ‘ He who has legs can dance,’ as if they understand the writings in a book lying in the corridors of a magnificent library.

The Waggle Dance 

If you thought you were the only one that enjoys the boogie-woogie dance, think again. Honey bees do this dance more than not and probably even better than the human race. How shocking! However, there are a few more dynamics to the dance which are meant to convey a message. When a honey bee wanders off to wonderland in search of nectar, and so happen to find a rich source, she comes back with news at the beehive and performs the dance for the rest of her foragers in the hive. The waggle dance is nothing but a funky food or nectar announcement meant to ignite the fire in foragers to go and collect the unavoidable. 

Trigonometry in the Hive

Bee waggle dance by J. Tautz and M. Kleinhenz, Beegroup Würzburg licensed under CC BY

The dance is not a shapeless, out-of-order performance that seemingly intrigues the rest of the foragers, but the moves are well calculated and belch with such mind-boggling accuracy. The bee loaded with good news shakes its abdomen from side to side whilst moving in a straight line in a back and forth manner. The direction in which this bee performs the back and forth waggle march will be at an angle to the sun and will be in the direction of to which the treasure lies. Not only do the rests of the honey mammoths receive the enlightenment of the direct of the opulent nectar source, but how far it is to get there is unveiled during the dance. Not as dumb creatures after all, now we know where Pythagoras stole from, aha!

Good Things Take Time

Quality is not always a breath away even if we wanted it to. Many a time we cross formidable rivers, climb steep and rugged walls, swim through murky waters, and fly over lofty mountain heads just to get the desires of our hearts. Sometimes that artless daisy flaunting its beautiful petals and loaded with an opulent source of nectar lies far away in a garden. When the scout bee finds a rich source in a faraway distance, her waggle dance lasts longer than it would have if the source was very close. Each second prolonged in the waggle is equivalent to a thumb-ruled distance which will eventually indicate at the end, how far the treasure lies.

The More the Merrier

Whose mood wouldn’t quiver with joy, ecstasy, and heartfelt satisfaction after something spectacular happens? Whose body would remain stagnant like a puddle at the hearing of good tidings? Well, we all tend to jingle with much enthusiasm like a jingle bell on a fine Christmas morning and like humans, bees do the same. Once a scout bee hits the dance floor of a beehive with news of an overwhelming find, the waggle dance is performed with an extra touch of enthusiasm to the forager bees in the recruitment queue. The dance becomes heated and very saucy like steak on a hungry man’s plate.

Adventure is Still a Virtue

The scout bee doesn’t always inform the forager bees of the direction to the find and not always is the source far away. This brings us to dance move number two. Instead of the more common waggle dance and its complexities, the bee sometimes moves in circles whilst changing her direction periodically. This move is usually employed in the event of a find within the proximity of about 0-100m. The recruited foraging bees have to find the source on their own like a blind man with no walking stick. Fortunately, the recruited are not entirely left at the mercy of the new find with no navigation to get there. The scent of the nectar brought by the scout bee left on the dance floor is used to hunt the food source down like the terminator. The wanderlust of the bees is embellished with a touch of adventure as they have to travel aimlessly to the food source announced by the herald bee. 

We Meet To Part and We Part To Meet

Apiarists all over the world specialize in harvesting the fruit of these minute giants and they help humanity to enjoy the sweetness that nature has to offer. Here in the USA, if you’re looking for bee farmers and would like a real-time experience with them and the bees or to simply know where they are, well, look no more for we can turn your dream into a reality. Visit our website at myhoneycrate.com and get the location of your nearest apiary and beekeepers. Hope you have a great hereafter and ‘bee’ happy. 

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