One day I had found some bees have come around the light source like other positively photo tropic insects, I hadn't seen any bees coming over light before. I think bees are diurnal and they don't leave their nest at nights, I also read from an article that parasitic wasps may attack bees and these attacked bees would lose their mind and leave their nest at nights.

Is this possible or any other reason behind the night travel of bees and their positive photo tropism ? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apocephalus_borealis


1 Answer 1


Honey bees rely on the position of the sun (and the ephemeris function) to navigate and communicate (i.e. the waggle dance). If they are out too late in the day to return to the hive (occasional), or if they are disturbed at night in the hive, they will fly towards a light.

Beekeepers and bee renters have learned that if you are going to disturb a hive at night, do so with minimal light so as not to lose bees. Also, they avoid lights in the vicinity of the hive in general.

There are a number of parasites and insecticides that cause bees to behave erratically. Colony Collapse Disorder is a major threat to the honeybee's survival.

Why are bees attracted to light? I don't know if anyone knows that.

Dinner and Dancing: Bee Navigation
The Cause Of Colony Collapse Disorder, Disappearing Bees Becoming More Clear

  • $\begingroup$ So if we create a large light source near the bee hive then bees would think its sun and they may start foraging, isn't ? $\endgroup$ Nov 21, 2014 at 6:56
  • $\begingroup$ Mostly they fly into the light. Foraging requires more UV light; they need to identify flowers by color (though they perceive them differently) and pattern. $\endgroup$ Nov 21, 2014 at 7:20
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    $\begingroup$ :Thank you for your valuable time. But I dont have enough reputation to up vote your answer. But virtually I am giving one. :) $\endgroup$ Nov 21, 2014 at 7:26
  • $\begingroup$ I guess they think that they are in some sort of tunnel, so they want to fly out. Many insects, for example flies behave the same way. $\endgroup$
    – inf3rno
    Nov 21, 2014 at 8:58
  • $\begingroup$ "In some sort of tunnel" can you explain that further ? $\endgroup$ Nov 21, 2014 at 9:20

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