The Need for Drones

While ‘natural beekeepers’ are used to thinking about a honeybee colony more regarding its intrinsic value towards the natural world than its ability to produce honey for human use, conventional beekeepers as well as the public in particular tend to be more prone to associate honeybees with honey. This has been the reason behind a person’s eye provided to Apis mellifera since we began our association with them just a couple of thousand years ago.

In other words, I think most of the people – when they it’s similar to in any respect – often imagine a honeybee colony as ‘a living system which causes honey’.

Before that first meeting between humans and honeybees, these adaptable insects had flowering plants along with the natural world largely privately – more or less the odd dinosaur – as well as over a span of ten million years had evolved alongside flowering plants along selected people who provided the best and level of pollen and nectar for use. We can easily believe that less productive flowers became extinct, save for individuals who adapted to presenting the wind, as opposed to insects, to spread their genes.

Its those years – perhaps 130 million by some counts – the honeybee continuously developed into the highly efficient, extraordinarily adaptable, colony-dwelling creature that we see and talk with today. On a variety of behavioural adaptations, she ensured a top level of genetic diversity from the Apis genus, among the propensity in the queen to mate at a long way from her hive, at flying speed at some height through the ground, with a dozen or so male bees, who have themselves travelled considerable distances from other own colonies. Multiple mating with strangers from outside the country assures a college degree of heterosis – fundamental to the vigour of any species – and carries its very own mechanism of choice for the drones involved: only the stronger, fitter drones have you ever gotten to mate.

A rare feature with the honeybee, which adds a species-strengthening edge against their competitors on the reproductive mechanism, is the male bee – the drone – is born from an unfertilized egg by a process referred to as parthenogenesis. Which means the drones are haploid, i.e. just have a bouquet of chromosomes produced from their mother. Thus signifies that, in evolutionary terms, top biological imperative of creating her genes to future generations is expressed in their own genetic acquisition of her drones – remembering that her workers cannot reproduce and therefore are thus a hereditary dead end.

Hence the suggestion I created to the conference was a biologically and logically legitimate way of regarding the honeybee colony can be as ‘a living system for creating fertile, healthy drones when it comes to perpetuating the species by spreading the genes of the finest quality queens’.

Thinking through this label of the honeybee colony provides a totally different perspective, in comparison to the conventional viewpoint. We are able to now see nectar, honey and pollen simply as fuels just for this system along with the worker bees as servicing the needs of the queen and performing all the tasks necessary to ensure that the smooth running of the colony, for your ultimate reason for producing high quality drones, that can carry the genes with their mother to virgin queens using their company colonies distant. We could speculate for the biological triggers that create drones to be raised at certain times and evicted or perhaps got rid of other times. We can easily think about the mechanisms that could control the amount of drones being a percentage of the overall population and dictate what other functions they may have inside hive. We could imagine how drones seem to be able to find their strategy to ‘congregation areas’, where they appear to assemble when awaiting virgin queens to give by, when they themselves rarely survive greater than around three months and seldom over the winter. There is certainly much that people still are not aware of and may never understand fully.

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