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Bee poo

 
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rendauphin
House Bee


Joined: 28 Sep 2011
Posts: 15
Location: United Kingdom, Dorset, Bridport

PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 1:58 pm    Post subject: Bee poo Reply with quote

Can anyone advise where house bees in their first couple of weeks after hatching poo? I am assuming foraging bees sort themselves out while out of the hive
Thanks
Jim
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Dexter's shed
Scout Bee


Joined: 16 May 2014
Posts: 307
Location: Grays, Essex, UK

PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 4:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is there a reason for needing to know???
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rendauphin
House Bee


Joined: 28 Sep 2011
Posts: 15
Location: United Kingdom, Dorset, Bridport

PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am talking to some kids tomorrow and suspect it may be a question they will ask!
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agapetos
Guard Bee


Joined: 26 Jun 2012
Posts: 71
Location: 40km NE of Belgrade, Serbia

PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 6:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, for starters, their entire lives are first couple of weeks (during the summer). Also, they go out to forage only in the second half of their lives, so...
... your question is really unique - I haven't really though about that a lot Smile
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Manuel Robert
Guard Bee


Joined: 04 Dec 2011
Posts: 73
Location: Bischofsheim, Rhön , Germany

PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 7:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bees can hold back for quit a while, but do undertake cleansing flights. This is especially important after winter, and can cause problems if weather does not allow these flights. Pooing in the hive can spread diseases like nosema.
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johno
Guard Bee


Joined: 08 Jun 2014
Posts: 60
Location: Limerick, Ireland

PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2014 1:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've got a related question. Do bee larvae poo? I know that the larvae of many insects poo a lot, especially caterpillars. I know that people on IV nutrition don't need to poo because their "food" is so concentrated. But caterpillars eat lots of fibre and tannins in their diet and that's gotta go somewhere, whereas bee larvae eat concentrated sugar and protein.

So, do bee larvae poo, and if they do what happens to it?

johno
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madasafish
Silver Bee


Joined: 29 Apr 2009
Posts: 880
Location: Stoke On Trent

PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2014 3:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You only need to look at used brood comb to see that bee larvae poo.. the colour tells you...
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johno
Guard Bee


Joined: 08 Jun 2014
Posts: 60
Location: Limerick, Ireland

PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2014 8:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for trying, but that answer is no good to me.

Someone could use a similar line of reasoning to come to the conclusion that storm clouds are made of elephants.

johno
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HowieNZ
Nurse Bee


Joined: 18 May 2014
Posts: 33
Location: Dunedin, New Zealand

PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2014 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shocked Laughing
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1581
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2014 10:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am assuming that they have some chamber maids as well as nurse bees etc. Certainly the queen doesn't leave the hive to poo, so some poor bee must have the job of emptying the royal chamber pot. I imagine bee poo will be carried out and deposited just like dead bees, but I don't know for sure. Brood cells are licked clean before they are laid back into. It's an unpleasant thought but nature is full of things that make us cringe.

You are right though, it's just the sort of question that kids will ask.

I think johno's explanation about it being a highly nutritious food and therefore there is very little waste is a good one. We know that adult bees can hold for at least 2 weeks, so maybe young house bees are able to hold until they have graduated to other duties.
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bingevader
New Bee


Joined: 20 Jul 2014
Posts: 8
Location: Wales

PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, bit too late to this.
However, from what I've read/been told, it depends on the age/stage/type of bee as to where it poos.
The foragers and any older bees that can fly will poo outside, away from the hive. They can hold it in for a long time, especially when over wintering, with the poo taking up most of the abdomen.
The young bees that have yet to fly will poo in the hive, but away from the comb, as will the Queen and drones.
The larvae don't poo until they have exhausted their food supply and are ready to pupate so as not to contaminate their food supply. A tidy bit of evolution that, with the hind gut not joining to the outside until this time.
They then smear the poo over the inside of the cell before spinning the cocoon in which they will metamorphose into the adult stage.
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stevecook172001
Site Admin


Joined: 19 Jul 2013
Posts: 443
Location: Loftus, Cleveland

PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 11:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fascinating post, thanks for that. I can see how some folks might find the above off-putting when it comes to eating honey from comb that was once used for brood rearing. For myself, I simply remember that alcohol is yeast p1ss, honey is bee vomit and eggs come out of a hen's arse and I rather like all of those things. So, I reckon a bit of bee sh1t aint gonna hurt..... Smile
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Paul Reyes
Nurse Bee


Joined: 14 Aug 2014
Posts: 26
Location: Scottsdale, AZ, USA

PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2014 8:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting point of view, read the world trend, thanks!
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HowToBee
New Bee


Joined: 24 Dec 2014
Posts: 6
Location: Rome, Italy

PostPosted: Wed Dec 24, 2014 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is a pretty interesting study that these scientists did: (Microbiology of Feces of the Larval Honey Bee by M Gilliam).

After taking larval honey bee feces, they found that it appears larvae can become inoculated with microorganisms from adult bees that have ingested contaminated food.
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HowToBee
New Bee


Joined: 24 Dec 2014
Posts: 6
Location: Rome, Italy

PostPosted: Wed Dec 24, 2014 11:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

After doing some research, a few bee biologists (Lars Chittka and Jurgen Tautz) seemed to find that bee excrement was similar to scent marks used as visual cues by bees.

After searching through the numerous scholarly articles on Bee Poop, of which there are almost none, it's clear that bee feces is a subject that needs much more attention by bee specialists.
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