There are over 20,000 species of bees in the world belonging to 9 different families. The smallest bee is 2mm long(Megachile Pluto) and the largest is 39 mm(Leafcutter Bee). Honey Bees, Bumblebees and Stingless Bees live in colonies, feeding on nectar for energy and pollen for protein, protein is fed to their larvae. Bees pollinating abilities are important to the flora and fauna of the planet, pesticides used have been seen to be threatening the bee population.

Bees that live in colonies and have different jobs, honey bees, have workers drones and queens. Worker’s jobs(female non-reproducing) can include, guards, nursemaid and undertakers, they generally have these occupations for life, but some change profession. Scientists have found that a guard bee’s DNA varies slightly to an undertaker’s. Also that if a bee changes job their chemistry changes with them. One percent of all middle aged bees become undertakers, jobs seem to be age specific too.

Older bees sometimes take on roles that are usually allocated to younger ones and when this happens the molecular structure of the bees changes and can reverse brain ageing. Scientists removed from a hive all the bees,just leaving the queen, babies and larvae and then returned all the older bees, who took to taking up all the posts that needed filling. They became the guards, food collectors and nursemaids. After 50 days scientists noted that the older bees, that took up caring and forging had by 50% improved their ability to learn new things.

Bees appear to have personalities, some bees seem to be better at their jobs than others and enjoy adventure. Sometimes when a hive colony has outgrown it’self, the hive population divides in search of a new home. However only 5% of bees(nest scouts) will go on a search for a suitable home and these explorer bees are 3.4 times more likely to be forager bees. Researches found thousands of differences in molecular structures between worker and non-worker bees.

Writing Tasks
The year is 2060, all social structure is now modelled on bees. Human now live in hives, with a strict regimentation of jobs. Free write(15-20 minutes).

Either the colony has become overcrowded and your character is a nest scout and needs to find a new home. Free write. (15-20 minutes).

Or Scientists have been examining the DNA of older workers and have found if they work on jobs deemed more suitable for younger workers their brains seem to be get younger. This is causing inner tensions. Free write (15-20 minutes).

Write a poem from the perspective of one type of bee, maybe who has a new job to do.(15-20 minutes).

Happy Writing!


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