28 November 2011

Honey Bee Facts


Today we pay homage to a furry little insect that is seldom noticed, but in the background goes about its business of maintaining the balance of existence.

Bees have a most exquisite relationship with the plant kingdom. So remarkable is this partnership that without it most of the food we eat would not come into existence...

In exchange for their pollination service flowers supply bees with nectar which the bees process and dehydrate into a delicious healthy treat called honey.

Interesting facts about honey bees:

A hive can easily contain 50 000 bees.

The honey bee is the only insect that produces food for human beings.

The Bushmen of Southern Africa used to collect honey from wild hives. In some cases these hives were passed down from father to son as heirlooms.

While natural honey is packed with goodness, modern day supermarkets often sell irradiated/radurised honey - this is like taking a bunch of beautiful roses and "radiating" them in a microwave oven for 5 minutes (on high) before giving them to someone special - Yes they are still roses, but something has changed :(

Excessive heating of honey destroys its beneficial bacteria, enzymes and amino acids.

Crystallization of honey(when honey changes from a viscous golden liquid) is actually a sign of good quality unprocessed honey.

The worker bees in a hive have to fly around the earth a couple of times (or equivalent distance) to make a single kilogram of honey.

If you want to relocate or move a hive you should move it at least 2 kilometers! If you relocate a hive too close to its original location the worker bees will return to the old site of the hive and die when they find their home missing. If the hive is moved a to a completely new location the bees will recognize this and reset their "internal GPS system" helping them to relocate the moved hive.


Next time you enjoy honey from your local farmers market or health shop remember the little miracles with wings that help bring even more sweetness into our world...

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