Bees Smother Enemies to Death
Honey bees can smother their enemies to death by swarming them, researchers report.
An intruding hornet looking for a snack in a beehive of Cyprian honey bees may suddenly find itself enveloped inside a buzzing ball of black-and-yellow worker drones.
The bees squeeze in tightly around the abdomen, where hornets breath, until the would-be aggressor dies of suffocation.
The average time for smothering a hornet is 57.8 minutes.
The discovery means that bees have three ways of dispatching their enemies: by stinging, which for a bee means suicide; by raising the other creature's body temperature, or thermo-balling; and by asphyxiation.
Tags: Bee | Smother | Kill