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Insect Identification: The Honey Bee

Insect Identification:  The Honey Bee By Shea Richardson
HIPhome Columnist
December 31, 1969

How to Tell a Honey Bee from a Wasp, Hornet, Etc.

One strategy on how to tell a honey bee from a wasp, hornet, etc. is by noticing their appearance. Wasps have a slender body with a narrow waist and slender legs. Their body appears to be shiny and have smooth skin. However, honey bees are full-bodied and appear to be quite hairy.

Another strategy on how to tell a honey bee from a wasp, hornet, etc. is to observe their feeding habits. Wasps are predators that feed on insects, sweets, and carbohydrates. You'll often see them around areas where human food and drinks are served. However, honey bees only feed on nectar and pollen from flowers. They will also occasionally feed on sugary foods found in trash cans or in soft drink containers.

A third strategy on how to tell a honey bee from a wasp, hornet, etc. is to look at what their nests look like. Hornets and wasps make their nests from a paper-like substance made up of wood fibers mixed with their saliva. Honey bees, however, make honey combs made of wax.

A last strategy on how to tell a honey bee from a wasp, hornet, etc. is by their stinger. Honey bees have a stinger with barbs on it that stays in your skin. After stinging a person, the honey bee will die due to the stinger being left behind as the honey bee flies away. A wasp or hornet is able to sting you more than once because they do not lose their stinger.

Bee Removal

The best advice for bee removal is to call a pest control official to help solve your problem. This bee removal technique is the safest way to fight off these insects. If you try your own technique for bee removal, you will be putting yourself and your family at risk for injury. Another alternative bee removal strategy is to contact a local bee keeper.

About the Author
An accomplished educator and writer, Shea Richardson has several years of teaching experience in the Georgia public school system. She holds a degree in Education from Georgia State University and specializes in topics spanning technology, education, and group dynamics.

*Before you apply any of the advice described on the Hip-home.com website, you should consider if the advice is safe and suitable for your individual home situation and consult experts as necessary to evaluate the suitability for your circumstances.
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