elizaBEEth was ready to go with the first sign of light. Even if the sunlight didn’t wake her up, the sound of her thousands of sisters buzzing their wings did the trick.
This was the way every day started. As soon as the sun went up, the sisters began their work. Some were guard bees, keeping watch day and night over the entrance. elizaBEEth looked at those stationed out there today. Good. They were the same ones from last night. She was always sad when new ones were there, because it meant something happened to them overnight.
Other bees started tending to the larvae. Larvae are the young brothers and sisters who don’t look like bees yet. They kinda look like worms.
“I used to be like that,” elizaBEEth thought to herself.
elizaBEEth used to work in the nursery, but now she had graduated to food gatherer. After a couple months of feeding the babies, putting wax over their cells, and making sure little bugs didn’t get into the nursery, bees graduated to food collection.
She was excited about the promotion, and she adapted quickly, just as all her sisters did. She knew it was a more dangerous job; in fact, many of her sisters didn’t come back in a given day. But everyone needed to be fed, so she took the risk gladly.
That first day, her sisters had danced for her, so she knew where to find the food. Bees don’t talk to each other. The only noise they make is by buzzing their wings. But when they want to give directions, they do a special dance that directs other bees to the food. Humans call the dance a “waggle.”
elizaBEEth had been on food duty for a couple months, but today, she was going to direct some new searchers who had graduated from nursery duty. So she lined up a couple of newBEEs, and did a dance. Oh, it was so beautiful. She went left twice, right three times, then spun halfway around, back to the front, spun again, then stopped. The learner bees immediately flew out of the hive and toward the flowers.
Now it was time for elizaBEEth to leave. She walked past the nursery bees, gave a goodby look to Momma Bee, who was busy (as a bee) laying eggs. Then there were a couple of drones, BEEnjamin and BEErian. They sat near the entrance, eating honey. elizaBEEth didn’t like them too much. But she and the other workers cleaned up after them and fed them anyway. She knew they’d leave soon. Drones never came back from their first flight.
Out the door she went, flying high. She rose above the wooden fence, and she made a bee line (literally) for a lawn full of dandelions. Dandelions are a great food source for bees, because they are plentiful. They spring up quickly, and they cover a lot of area in only a matter of days.
So she landed on the bright yellow flower, and she packed her bags on her legs with pollen.
“Momma will need the protein to make baBEEs,” she thought to herself.
Next, she stuck her long tongue down into the flower, sucking up the nectar. She flew to the next flower, when a loud noise interrupted her. A large, red machine with spinning blades was coming right for her. The human behind it was cutting up all the plants; flowers, grass, weeds all went under the machine and came out shorter. The tops flew out the side and into a bag.
elizaBEEth hurried out of the way of the machine and looked for a new yard. Fortunately, the neighbors were out of town. So she alighted on their lawn and got several dandelions’ nectar and pollen.
Now she was thirsty. She needed some water to mix in with the nectar so she could make the honey. Oh, good, this yard has a pool. She liked people who had water out for her. Sometimes it was a pool; sometimes it was a bucket of water; sometimes people even put little rocks in the bucket so the bees could stand on them and get the water without drowning.
Man-made water sources are safer for the bees, because lakes and streams and ponds attract dragonflies. elizaBEEth lost several of her sisters, who collected near the lake, each day to the dragonflies.
Today, she had a pool. Nice and clean. She sat on the edge of the pool, and put out her tongue to get some water. Something moved the water in the pool, causing a wave, and it knocked elizaBEEth into the pool.
If she could talk, she would have screamed. But she paddled as well as she could, trying her best to breathe. Her wings stuck to the water, so she couldn’t move them at all.
It only takes seconds for a bee to drown, so she was lucky that the pool boy was there. He reached with his net on a stick and brought her out of the pool. He put her on the ground, and she sat still a couple of moments. She let the sun dry her off, and then she was on her way.
She found several more flowers, and put more pollen in her bags and drank more nectar. Soon she was headed home.
She went straight there, but she always kept a watchful eye out for birds, cars, anything that might kill her before she could get back to home and drop off her honey.
She landed in front of the door, and went inside. She found some open wax cells and threw up inside them. Once she did that, she fanned her wings, so she could dry out the excess water. Now she had perfect honey, and she put wax on top of the cells to keep the honey safe. It’d be used by nursery bees to feed the baBEEs, or it would last until winter time, when they’d all eat it.
elizaBEEth looked out the door. The sun was still up, so she flew outside and started her flight all over again.
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Wow! This is so nice. I was picturing the scenes like in my mind. This is a great learning tool. It could be a children's book. There was so much to learn but it was so pleasant and enjoyable.
Thank you. :)