Insects

Apis mellifera capensis

Common Name: Cape Honey Bee
Family: Apidae
Description: Characteristically darker in colour than other honeybees.
Distribution: This bee only be found in the Western Cape and some parts of the Eastern Cape amongst the Fynbos
Life Cycle: The life cycle follows the pattern: egg-larva-pupa-adult.
Diet: It feeds on the nectar and pollen of many different flowering fynbos plants.
Behaviour: Colonies have but one mated Queen with 10 000 to 50 000 worker bees that are all female. The queen been can however choose the sex of her offspring and unfertilized eggs develop into male “drones” which are only used for mating and will die after the “deed” is done. Queens have an average lifespan of four years whereas workers only survive for a few weeks during summer.
Conservation Status: Least Concern
Interesting Fact: The Cape Honeybee is extremely important within the ecosystem as they play an important role of providing pollination services to all plants.