Friday, September 10, 2010

A bee, or not a bee, that's the question

Posted By on Fri, Sep 10, 2010 at 2:36 PM

Really, I wasn't entering this work day looking for a reason to pick on our daily newspaper, The Gazette.

But while flipping briefly through today's GO! calendar, I noticed an error I'd like to bring to the paper's attention, on page 16.

Yellow jackets are often mistaken for honeybees, and vice versa, due to a general lack of knowledge about key features on each.
  • Yellow jackets are often mistaken for honeybees, and vice versa, due to a general lack of knowledge about key features on each.

The central graphic on the spread relates to an upcoming honey harvest at Bear Creek Nature Center. The only problem is that isn't a honeybee in the photo. Speaking as a beekeeper, I'm 99 percent sure that we're looking at a yellow jacket.

Here's a photo of a honeybee from my own colony, so you can note the difference in appearance:

Honeybees are much more orange than yellow with more of a fuzzy texture.
  • Honeybees are much more orange than yellow, with more of a fuzzy texture.

For the record, none of the honey you enjoy in your tea comes from yellow jackets — they don't produce it.

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