colts foot's picture

Honey Bee

Observed: 1st October 2011 By: colts footcolts foot’s reputation in Invertebratescolts foot’s reputation in Invertebratescolts foot’s reputation in Invertebrates
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Description:

Is it possible to tell the difference between a worker Honey Bee and a drone from a photo, and if it is which part of the anatomy is needed, is it the sting?

Identifications
Species interactions

No interactions present.

Species with which Honey bee (Apis mellifera) interacts

Comments

colts foot's picture

David Notton : latin correction

Hi David Notton
Can you give me some further information on this specimen of Apis mellifera? Is it a sterile female worker please?

mustang sally

DavidNotton's picture

difference between worker and drone

Yes, it's a worker (sterile female). The drone (male) is more chunky, has much large eyes, no sting, also there are more subtle differences in the number of antennal segments and metasomal sclerites.

colts foot's picture

difference between worker and drone

Great, thanks, I have a couple of pictures of the sting-end and I can not see the sting in the sterile female worker, maybe it is "retracted" in the abdomen until it is needed?

mustang sally

DavidNotton's picture

Sting

is retracted when not in use

colts foot's picture

food source

and ...
are they collecting just the small amounts of pollen and nectar that is left in the late flower heads?
In the height of summer the honey bees are covered in pollen and collect it in lumps on their back legs - is there no evidence of this because it is late summer and the growing season is over?

mustang sally

DavidNotton's picture

Pollen collecting

There is still pollen available from some kinds of flowers - I saw some bees collecting pollen from Mulleins (Verbascum nigrum) this morning - although the bee you photographed appears to be concentrating on nectar. Perhaps there's no pollen on the particular flowers it's visiting or it just isn't interested to collect it.

colts foot's picture

Thank you very much for

Thank you very much for response.
Much appreciated
from

Sarah

mustang sally