Who told the bees?

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The second Mearns Probus Club meeting for the month of October was held in the Crown Inn, Laurencekirk, with President Ian Williamson chairing.

After the usual business matters, he then introduced Willie Taylor from Drumlithie, whose talk was called “Who told the Bees.”

A keen beekeeper for many years, the speaker asked many questions during his talk, starting with “What colour is honey?”

He then showed about ten samples of honey, ranging in colour from light golden – to white – then dark brown all honey, but the difference was in age and where the bees had fed on Heather, oil seed rape flowers, woodlands, wild flowers all produce nectar and pollen which affects the finished product.

One question he kept reminding his audience of was “Who told the bees?”

Why do bees have two antennas, 3 parts to their body, four wings, five eyes and six legs?

The explanation is that every part has its own function. But the bees also have a sense of direction – hence the phrase Bee-Line – know where the sun is, can make allowances for wind speed and direction and can communicate distances from the hive to the nectar source to other bees in the hive.

All this information and the bees behaviour in the hive, living with drones, the function of the Queen, comb building in hexagonal form, producing wax to a simple form of air conditioning of the hive was given out.

Willie Taylor is not only very enthusiastic, but presents his talk in a most interesting and acceptable way involving audience participation, for which all members were rewarded by a sample of his excellent produce.

Alex Findlayson summed up and on finishing he called for members to accord a vote of thanks to Willie, which they did.

The next meeting of the club will be on Monday November 7 at Montrose Air Station Heritage Centre. Members should meet at the Crown Inn for transport at 10 am.