Posted by: buzzybeegirl | January 9, 2009

SlumBee Parties

Hello faithful readers. First, I would like to wish everyone a happy new year. It’s a new year, we are getting a new President soon, and I am starting to blog again. Things are looking up.

Now onto the bees. I was hanging out with my friend Goodbear…well actually, I was over her house working and she was working. Still, being with her is fun. Whether working or just hanging out. Anyways, we were talking about the cluster of bees and how cool it was to have them. Then it turned into questions people may have about bees. The one question we discussed was ‘ how do you know when a bee is sleeping?’

Think about it. Bees don’t have eyelids. They don’t have a bubble of ‘zzzzz’s’ coming out of them. How the heck can you tell?

Look at the picture below.


This photo was taken during the day. Look at the bees antennae. They are up. They look alert (for antennae. use your imagination). When you see a bee land on a flower, or just resting on an object, look at their antennae. They are usually moving. Moving, trying to gather the scents around them. They are active.

The photo below (taken by goodbear) is a cluster of male Agapostemon males getting ready to bunker down for the night. There are hundreds of males clustering together on one of goodbear’s Mesquite branches. But again…look at their antennae. They are still pointing up and alert looking.

Photo taken by Goodbear (

Photo taken by Goodbear (

Now, look at the photo below. Look at his antennae. They are down. Drooping down the side of his head like ears on a bloodhound.

Photo taken by Goodbear (

Photo taken by Goodbear (

This bee is sleeping. Looking at a bees antennae is similar to looking at someones eyes. When you are sleepy your eyelids begin to droop. They get heavy. When you are asleep, they are closed. Bees are similar. At night when they are getting ready for bed, the “sleepier” the bee gets, the droopier it’s antennae get. Their antennae get heavier and heavier, then they drop to the side.

Good night sweet bee.



  1. sigh….i miss the bees. when are they coming back?
    thanks for posting about their sleeping habits. you know how crazy i am about bee bed time!

  2. That’s cool, I didn’t know that!

  3. Nice blog and macro photos of bees! I’m a biologist too (land management), and miss ecological research like yours! Keep up the good work.

    Thanks again for checking out my blog and for your comments, and I was curious how you found it.

    • Thanks for stopping by bhealy. The sleeping bee photo was taken by my good friend George (without a macro). She got such a great shot of this bee sleeping I just had to use it. I ran across your blog via tag surfer. Your photos just caught my eye and drew me in.

  4. amazing! until reading this blog, i’ve never really had any sort of fascination when it came to bees but now I see that they are pretty interesting creatures, worthy of being informed upon (:

    • Thanks for visiting Cassandra. And thanks for thinking the bees are interesting. They are cool little creatures aren’t they.

  5. WOW. I’ve wondered how a bee looks when it’s sleeping. These are great shots. I am looking forward to Spring and return of more bees. We’ve got a few that’ll come out on warm days but for the most part, they are gone.

  6. Dennis, we now need a photo of you sleeping so we can do a comparison

  7. Eee!

    I mean. Hi! I love bees (being a beekeeper and all) and tend to squeal a bit when I see pictures as cute as these. Glad to have found your blog!

  8. (sorry I’m late….in Florida for my sister’s baby shower)

    Now this is information I can use. It’s the sort of thing I’ll pop out at a party!

    Of course….I’m wondering what sort of response the sleeping bee had when that flash went off!

  9. Thanks for stopping by Felicia & the bees like being thought of as cute. Up close who can resist their charm =-)

    Thanks forkboy. Goodbear and I did feel bad about the flash…poor bee probably had nightmares.

  10. the green ones got pissed at the flashlight while we focused. the ones with the green eyes just rolled with it, i think.

  11. I can’t wait for spring so I can see more bees. I’m learning more and mroe from you what to look for. Thanks!

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