A week or so ago, I decided to remove the top-feeder that I was using (something that led to a lovely individual bee rescue 🙂 ). It all went well but several of the bees, presumably not foragers, ended up just in front of the hive or on the landing board. I was concerned about them not being able to make their way back into the hive when I noticed a great site: a couple of the bees were busy fanning their nasonov gland!
The instructor at the Royal Roads bee course had just been talking about this gland a few days prior. It was cool to see it in action. Apparently, for bees it’s like a set of landing lights at an airport. As you can see in the video, a couple of the bees started actively signaling and it looks like a couple of guard bees ready to check others in at the door! The pheromone that is released is being actively spread into the air to guide other bees home.
And yes, it looked like most of the bees made it home 🙂