State Symbols USA home page

Google

  SITEMAP  

  QUIZ  

Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delaware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming
USA (national)

Georgia State Insect

Honeybee on willow bloom - click to see all state insects
Honeybee on willow bloom photo by Brad Smith (BugMan50) on Flickr -
noncommercial use permitted with attribution. All State Insects.

Honeybee

Honeybee video

The honeybee was designated state insect of Georgia in 1975 - acknowledging the honeybee's contribution to the state's economy through honey production and aiding pollination of more than 50 Georgia crops.

Bee pollination is critical to plant and human survival - beeswax and honey are just surplus gifts from this tiny wonder of nature. The plant world expends a lot of energy attracting bees and other insects with brilliantly colored flowers and sweet nectar (nectar is produced solely to attract pollinating insects). The honeybee is recognized as an official state symbol in seventeen states (see State Insects), primarilly because honeybees play such an important role in agriculture.

Honeybees live in hives of up to 80,000 individuals. A hive consists of one queen bee (who can live 8 years and lay over 1,500 eggs per day), a small group of male drones (on hand to fertilize a new queen on her nuptial flight, should one be produced), and the remaining vast majority of sterile female worker bees.

Dripping honey - click to see al insect symbols
Dripping honey Photo by Scott Bauer, courtesy USDA Agricultural Research Service Image Gallery: Illustrations. All State Insects.

Young worker bees are called house bees - they construct the hive and maintain the comb, care for the eggs and larvae, tend the queen and drones, regulate temperature, and defend the hive. Older workers are field bees - they gather nectar and forage for pollen, water and plant resins used in hive construction. Worker bees have an extra stomach and special pollen baskets on their hind legs to transport the booty. Empirical evidence suggests that the honeybee "dances" to communicate the location of a nectar discovery to other honeybees. Worker bees only live about 6 weeks in summer months, but honeybees born in fall survive until the following spring.

The first bees appear in the fossil record dating 40 million years ago and the honeybee has remained physically and socially unchanged for 30 million years. Probably originating in tropical Africa, they were brought to the New World with the first Spanish and English colonists, quickly escaping to the wild and eventually populating the entire western hemisphere. American Indians called the honeybee "white man's flies."

Source:
Honeybee: Great Plains Nature Center
Honey Bees Across America by B. Kellar - OR Beekeepers
Links:
Enter the Hive: PBS
All State Insects


    

 

Georgia Symbols & Icons:

bird - game bird
butterfly - insect
flower-wildflower
mammal
reptile
amphibian
fish - seashell
fruit- food
vegetable - tree
crop - monument 
gem - mineral
fossil - soil

flag - seal - motto
creed - quarter
name - nickname
language - school
BBQ cookoffs
possum - tartan
folk festival - play
museum 1 - 2 - 3
center 1-2 - atlas
song - ballet
dance - waltz
theater 1 - 2
 

Share |

All New Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew
All New Square Foot Gardening
by Mel Bartholomew

Organic Gardening Magazine (2-year subscription)
Organic Gardening Magazine
(2-year subscription)

Attracting Birds, Butterflies & Backyard Wildlife - National Wildlife Federation
Attracting Birds, Butterflies & Backyard Wildlife
by National Wildlife Federation

Honeybee Video

All state insect videos

Google
What are your State Symbols?
State Symbols USA is a nonprofit organization promoting
appreciation for our natural treasures and cultural heritage.