Western Honeybee
Apis mellifera

The overall size of the honeybee is 1/2 to 1-1/4 inches. This is a slender, hairy bee that is tawny in color, with some black pollen baskets on its hind legs. Its preferred habitat is hollow trees, man-made hives, and wherever flowers are present.

These insects have a social organization that is among the most elaborate in the animal world. Hundreds of, or even thousands, individuals live in a communal nest, each with a task to perform. A queen lays eggs, but the males (drones) do nothing but impregnate the queen. Workers gather, make, and store food (honey) for the adults and the worm-like larvae.

An unseen characteristic is the sting. Only some females have this sharp, hollow, sometimes barbed organ connected to a poison gland inside the abdomen. If disturbed, the insect protrudes the stinger, stabs the victim, and injects poison into the wound, resulting in painful itching or worse.

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