Honey bee behavior – “festooning” and beeswax production

Have you noticed honey bees in your hives hanging as if linked in a chain, hooked together by their legs, between the frames of foundation in your hive?

These bees are “festooning” or hanging in a festoon or chain. This behavior is linked to beeswax production, but not well understood by bee scientists. I read that the reason for this activity is to create the proper temperature for wax production, but I wonder about the actual science behind this assumption. If any of you can provide a link or reference from a scientific source of a detailed explanation for this behavior please send it to me.

This post was prompted by honey bees festooning in my hives recently, in a recently added honey super containing frames with fresh foundation.


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