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As part of The Hour’s visit to the Royal Highland Show 2011, we followed St Patrick’s RC primary school as they were given an insight into the life of honey bees.
A special tent has been erected at the annual show which aims to explain bee’s behaviour and draw attention to their environmental plight, which has seen their number diminish considerably across the UK.
Arriving at the bee display the children from St Patrick’s where given a quick Q&A session before seeing a real live working bee-hive for themselves.
Questions ranged from ‘What do honey bees eat?’ to ‘Why are honey bees attracted to flowers?’.
A Honey-bee specialist from the RHS was on hand to answer the questions and tell the children just why our ecosystem is so dependant on bees:
“They gather nectar from flowers which is then made into honey. The colour and smell of the flowers are what attract them in the first place.”
Also explained was the insects fascinating ‘waggle dance’; a strange walk that bees perform immediately after entering the hive to communicate the distance and direction of great nectar spots.
The children were then asked to perform their very own waggle dance in the same manner as the bees.
Towards the end of their demonstration the pupils were given the chance to make their own wax candle to take home and keep.