Big things about a tiny honeybee


  1. It’s about 700,000 times smaller than the average human.
  2. It has 960,000 neurons, compared to 86 billion for a human.
  3. It has six articulated limbs, each with six segments.
  4. It has five eyes. Two of them are compound eyes made up of 6,900 lenses and cover about half of the face, These two mega-eyes sees the world differently. Red looks black, and the three primary colors are blue, green, and ultraviolet. It detects motion intensely but outlines are fuzzy and images, blocky.
  5. Its other three eyes detect only changes in light, as a warning of danger.
  6. Its four wings move at 11,400 strokes a minute.
  7. The wiggle dance tells other members of the colony where a nectar supply is within a five-mile radius of the hive.
  8. Of 20,000 species of bees, only four make honey.
  9. Around 80 percent of all American fruit, vegetable, and seed crops are pollinated by bees.
  10. Its straw-like tongue extends far beyond the jaw but has no taste buds. Instead, specialized hairs sense the chemicals that brush up against its exceptionally hairy body.

– from an article by Natasha Frost at Atlas Obscura

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