Bumblebees. Interesting Facts
Today let's talk about the Bumblebee. Bumblebee - flying insect, a very close relative of normal honey bee.
Externally bumblebee is very similar to an ordinary bee, but it is larger in length up to 2, 5 cm and more, his plump little body is densely covered with hairs. The back is dark, often with yellow stripes, but sometimes there are strips of orange or red, rare pure black individuals without stripes. Taurus insect sting smooth finishes without chipping, which is not visible in the normal state. On the back are 2 small transparent flap.
In total scientists have counted more than 300 species of bumblebees. They appeared on Earth about 30 million. Years ago! They live in the northern part of Eurasia and Africa, North America. Not so long ago these furry insects were brought to Australia and New Zealand. They thrive in the mountains and in the woods and in the fields.
How to live bumblebees
They build nests in the ground, leaf litter, tree hollows, Bird's Nest, mole, mouse, squirrel burrows.
In every family there are about 200-300 animals:
uterus, which lay their eggs, they are the largest - an average of 26 mm;
workers who finish building and repairing the nest, search for food, they are very small - up to 19 mm;
males who fertilize the queens, have average sizes - up to 22 mm.
One worker bees - a trumpeter. Every morning he takes off from the first slot and a special buzz wakes others.
bumblebee family one summer lives. In the fall of all insects are killed, except for a few fertilized young queens who hibernate in April, begin to build a nest, lay eggs and give birth to a new family.
All 4 stages of development of the Bumblebee: egg - larva (developing 10-14 days) - doll (develops 14 days) - the adult insect. All of the eggs before the adult insect passes an average of 1 month.
Psithyrus (parasitic bumblebees, whisperers; lat Psithyrus.) - subgenus social parasites of the genus bumblebees (Bombus), not building the nests and collecting pollen and nectar. Until recently it was considered a separate genus. No need for food production has led to differences from other bees: the hairs that cover the chitin, fewer and shorter; proboscis is shorter; chitin skeleton is much tighter; baskets to collect pollen on their hind legs no. Caste is not working. For breeding psithyrus enters the nest of bumblebees host, after giving them about a month to development. To find the nest parasite is guided by the smell emanating from the rubbish accumulating in the bottom of the slot. flight sound more quiet, so as not to attract the attention of the owners. The parasite penetrates secretly, at first hidden from the nest hosts, until they acquire the smell, then selected and deliberately walks in front of them to test their reaction. Bumblebees, do not pay attention to him, he did not touch it, and those who try to attack, kill. His chitin skeleton is much stronger bumblebee, sting longer and sharper jaw with strong teeth and injure more bumblebee. But sometimes the bees attack by a large group, and the intruder dies because he has in his armor vulnerabilities: the end of the abdomen and neck.
Usually psithyrus uterus kills the host, and then ejected from the brood of larvae and egg packages (but not pupae - they produce heat, and do not consume foods). But some species do not touch the hosts, and they (the parasite and host) breed. But if two psithyrus penetrate into one socket, be sure to start a fight, and one of them will inevitably perish. Each type of bumblebee parasite develops in one or two nests of bumblebees host, and their range extends almost to the northern boundary of the range of bumblebees spread. Many species even apparently copied the types that are selected for development (one species - only males).
The larvae of the parasite develop faster host and uterus less demanding winter conditions.
Interesting facts about bumblebees
Bumblebees (Latin Bombus.) - genus of Hymenoptera, which are close relatives of melliferous bees. About 300 species of bees live in Northern Eurasia, North America, North Africa, as well as in some other regions of the mountains.
Bumblebees - one of the most cold-resistant insects. They are able to quickly and often reducing the chest muscles, rapidly warm your body to the required 40 ° C. This allows them to depart early in the morning and collect the nectar of the first, when the air is not yet sufficiently warmed up, and gives bumblebees definite competitive advantage over other types of insects.
It helps bumblebee bask his "hair" - it reduces heat loss by half.
In flight 90% of the energy is converted to heat and because the flying bumblebee temperature is constant. 36 "C at an ambient temperature of 5 ° C and 45 ° C - at 35 ° C in the air at higher temperatures bumblebee can not fly iz While overheating cooling mechanisms in bumblebees are:. a flying bumble bee produces mouth drop of liquid that evaporates and cools the head.
Bumblebee is not able to maintain a high body temperature when sitting still.
They live in colonies of bumblebees 50-200 individuals each. In the colony consists of three types of individuals: female workers (sexually immature females) and males. The founder of the family is a female, the uterus, it is one of the few overwintered females fertilized in the fall. In early spring (late April-May), the uterus alone begins to arrange the slot. A feature of bumblebees is that, unlike other social bees, all the larvae develop and feed together in one cell. Under normal conditions, female, postponing 200-400 eggs, which give workers begins to lay eggs, which develop males and females.
A long time ago, it was observed that the "trumpeter" appears in bumblebee nests before dawn, which is thought to raise the buzz tribesmen to work. But it turned out that he was just shivering. Indeed, in the early morning hours the temperature at the soil surface drops sharply. Socket and cooled, in order to warm it, bees have to work hard pectoral muscles.
On hot days, you can see a bumblebee at the entrance to the nest that flutters its wings. It is engaged in ventilation slots.
Do bumblebees, as well as from bees, it is a poison, but unlike bees, bumblebees sting in human skin is left. A bruise may accordingly many times in a row.
Because of the small aggressive bees, they can be widely used in the garden and suburban areas. There is even a branch of such called shmelevodstvo - breeding bees for pollination of crops in order to increase their productivity.
overwintered female bumblebee (womb) in early spring is a place to nest. Overlaid outside slot dry blades of grass or moss, female doing inside the first circular wax cell. It puts into the cell a small supply of food - a mixture of pollen and honey - and lays a few eggs. Sealing the cell, the queen builds a following.
There is a common misconception that a bumblebee flies contrary to the laws of aerodynamics. Probably, it arose in the early XX century, when trying to apply to the calculation of bumblebee lift designed for aircraft. Zheng physicist Jane Wang of Cornell University (USA) proved that flying insect does not violate the laws of physics. This required a lot of hours on a supercomputer simulation of a complex air traffic around fast-moving wings. Wang pointed out that the old myth of the bumblebee - a consequence of poor understanding of the aeronautical engineer unsteady viscous gas dynamics.
appearance of bumblebees time is not known. The earliest fossils of the genus Bombus date back to the Oligocene (38 - 26 million years), but the time of occurrence of the group is still unknown. The fossil of the Bumblebee is a very rare find, as the fall in the resin to such a large insect to completely then be enveloped in it and harden into amber, it is very difficult.
Findings suggest Asia as a place where bees first appeared. So far in this part of the world home to the greatest diversity of bumblebees.