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Pity The Poor Drone!

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Pity The Poor Drone!

It may come as a surprise to you, but most of the bees in the beehive are females! The Queen is the one sexually active female of the hive, and the workers, who comprise most of the population, are all sexually inactive females. Males do exist, though in small numbers. They are called Drones.

Drones, unlike worker bees, are pretty unproductive. They don't have stingers, so they cannot provide defense for the hive. They have no work duties; in fact, their only activity is to mate with the virgin Queen. Fifteen days after a new Queen is born she takes off on a mating flight. The drones are waiting in the air above the hive, and they mate, one after another with the Queen. The Queen, then stores the spermatazoa in a receptacle in her body for the rest of her life. It is a bitter-sweet moment for the Drone, however, for he loses his life in the process of mating. Yet, it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all, because if the drone lives into the fall season, when he isn't needed, then he is unceremoniously cast out of the hive where he will starve to death.

And so, that is the sad story of the Drone bee, whose sole purpose in life is (similar to other species of animals that we won't mention) to strive for one brief shining moment, basking in the light of the irresistible female...one bitter-sweet shining moment.