what do bees eat?
Bees are a familiar sight in spring and summer, bustling to and from flowers and collecting pollen on their legs. Bees live in complex colonies called hives, and every day thousands of worker bees head out to find, gather and process pollen and nectar. Honey bees make and eat honey along with another compound called ‘bee bread.’ Honey is made from nectar, which is stored in wax honeycombs built by the bees themselves. The bees produce special enzymes that help the nectar thicken and turn into honey. Honey is very long-lasting and if stored properly can stay good for more than 2000 years! Bee bread is made by mixing pollen with the nectar, and then fed to bee larvae.
Baby bees are first fed a diet of a substance known as royal jelly, which young worker bees can excrete. If a larva is fed nothing but royal jelly, she will grow into a queen bee. Most larvae, however, graduate to bee bread and honey before becoming adults.