What Do Bees Eat

what do bees eat

Bees are extremely important for environment, and like other winged creatures, they have quite the appetite. The enjoy feeding on pollen and honey. One of their favorite foods is nectar, which is a sweet, sugary liquid.

All bee larvae dine on royal jelly, which is produced by the hypo pharyngeal gland of mature worker bees.

Another favorite is something called bee bread, and it has nothing to do with ovens or baking. The bead is really just a mixture of pollen and honey. Queen larvae are given huge amounts of royal jelly for three days to cause its ovaries to develop.

Larger colonies of bees, in the 75,000 range, can consume as much as 100 pounds of honey during winter. During the summer and spring months, bees work much harder to create extra honey.

PRO TIP: Did you know that bees are color-sensitive insects, so they rely on their vision to find food.

What Do Honey Bees Eat?

The honey bee is one of the most common types and prefers to eat nectar and pollen. They uses these foods to create honey. You can easily find bees roaming around large fields and searching for a variety of flowering vegetation.

The pollen that they eat is a powdery, dust-like substance, and it’s created by flowering plants. Pollen happens to be one of the richest, purest natural foods for bees because it contains all of the nutritional requirements that a bee needs.

Pollen is packed with minerals, vitamins, enzymes, protein, carbohydrates and sugar. Honey bees also eat nectar, which can be found in flowers. Nectar is actually a sweet liquid, and it’s the major ingredient that is used by bees to create honey.

Bumble Bees

Ever wondered what bumble bees eat? This is actually the most common type of bee, and scientists have discovered over 250 different species. This little bugger is actually indigenous to the Northern Hemisphere, but there are several species living in many different countries.

It should come as no surprise that these insects eat many of the same foods as most of their brothers and sisters. Since they’re herbivorous insects, they eat a diet consisting almost entirely of nectar. When there is no access to nectar, they have no problem eating honey and pollen.

Carpenter Bees

These little buggers are known to eat wood, but they don’t get nutritional value from the wood. To get the nutrients needed for survival, carpenter bees eat the nectar and pollen from flowering plants. When it comes to their diet, they’re almost identical to all of the other species of bees.

Queen Bees

There is a process that bees use to select larvae to become future queens. These bees are fed royal jelly, which is a white secretion that is produced by young female worker bees. The royal jelly is made of pollen and chemicals that come from special glands on the females.

The queen bee is fed royal jelly throughout its life, which makes it live significantly longer and grow larger than most other bees.

Killer Bees

Like most other species, the killer bee feeds on nectar and pollen, but these insects tend to harvest significantly more pollen than the European honey bees. Hybridized killer bees came to be when bees were imported into Brazil. Some of the queens were able to get loose and form colonies.