THE FOLLOWING HAS BEEN UPDATED SINCE ORIGINALLY POSTED.
I like watching the honey bees in my backyard. It’s impressive to see a bee come back to the hive weighed down with pollen. I’ll get a picture of that soon enough. But today — five minutes ago — I noticed a row of bees near the entrance of Hive #2 fanning their wings.
Just sitting there together, not moving, but fanning their wings like crazy. I’m guessing they were trying to cool down the hive, get a breeze blowing through it. At first there were three bees in a row. Then one flew away but the two remaining kept at it.
Maybe they’re just a couple of baby bees drying off their newly-minted wings. As usual, I don’t know, but I’m going with the cooling-the-hive theory.
More bees seemed to appear as I got closer to take the photos, but they also seemed happy to ignore me.
And the two cool bees kept doing their thing. Give it up for the Cool Sisters! (All worker bees are female.)
UPDATE (Jan. 30/11): I knew this a long time ago, but didn’t have time to update the post until now. The bees are ventilating the hive to regular the temperature or to help evaporate water from the nectar to turn it into honey, or both.