Bees stinging bees

Beekeeping & Apiculture Forum

Help Support Beekeeping & Apiculture Forum:

subbuteo 

New Bee
Joined
Mar 6, 2009
Messages
36
Reaction score
0
Location
N Ireland
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
6
Does a bee necessarily die when it stings another bee (or wasp)? I'm thinking in terms of robbing bees getting attacked by the guard bees. Obviously, if they sting us, the sting gets pulled out because of the barb anchoring in our skin and the bee dies. Does this happen when another bee gets stung? Our skin is considerably thicker than a bees exoskeleton. Does anyone know? I haven't had a clear, definitive answer and I am curious to know.:confused:
 

planbee 

House Bee
Joined
Apr 13, 2009
Messages
181
Reaction score
0
Location
Staffordshire, UK
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
Two
Does a bee necessarily die when it stings another bee..

I seem to remember being told that because of the elasticity of human skin, bee's only die after stinging humans.

My understanding is that they withdraw their sting from other creatures.

John
 

victor meldrew 

Queen Bee
***
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Messages
6,777
Reaction score
295
Location
Wigan
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
6
When bees sting any other insect, they penetrate an exoskeleton (rather like piercing an egg) when a bee stings a mammal the barbed sting works it's way deep into the skin using a muscular action and the fact that the sting is barbed and divided thus giving a push pull action. The skin close around the sting, the only way the bee can escape is to tear it'self free, losing it's rear end in the process
Hope this helps
John Wilkinson
 

planbee 

House Bee
Joined
Apr 13, 2009
Messages
181
Reaction score
0
Location
Staffordshire, UK
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
Two
So all mammals are the same to a bee, then, John, I didn't realise.

Makes sense, I stand corrected.


John
 

victor meldrew 

Queen Bee
***
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Messages
6,777
Reaction score
295
Location
Wigan
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
6
So all mammals are the same to a bee, then, John, I didn't realise.

Makes sense, I stand corrected.


John
Plus poultry ,in fact anything with an elastic skin :).

John
 

subbuteo 

New Bee
Joined
Mar 6, 2009
Messages
36
Reaction score
0
Location
N Ireland
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
6
So, I am right in my belief that a bee can sting another bee without losing is sting?

When I had robbing at a nuc last year there was a mighty pile of bees at the hive entrance, all of them intact. It would make sense for the guard bees to be able to guard the nest without dying considering the numbers of bees involved in robbing a nuc compared to the number defending. The nuc was not significantly depopulated following the robbing so the dead bees must mostly have been robbers.

I assume bee venom is very potent when used on another insect- if it can cause us pain, it must be fairly devastating on the insect-sized scale.
 

Latest posts

Top