Honey Bee Biology



Which is correct: 
honeybee   or   honey bee?

Many people notice that dictionaries list "honeybee" as one word.  However, entomologists use the two-word naming convention "honey bee."  So, both are correct!


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Welcome to a Continuing Education course in Honey Bee Biology
Welcome to Honey Bee Biology: An Introduction to Bees and Beekeeping.  This course is a modification of ENTO 489 Honey Bee Biology, which is offered on-campus at Texas A&M University.  It h as proven to be a popular course; its students have ranged from entomology majors to arts students.  The only prerequisites are that you have an inquiring mind, an interest in learning about honey bee biology, and a willingness to study.  I assume you know nothing about bees or science, and have assessed the level of this course appropriately.  Hopefully, this course will stimulate you to think further about an insect that has fascinated humans throughout history. If you are a beekeeper, we hope this course will supplement your knowledge of the honey bee and apicultural practices.

The course consists of:

  1. Four comprehensive assignments covering reading materials from 2 text books and up-to-date on-line materials. The assignments are designed to encourage you to learn bee biology, integrate basic biology with apicultural practices, and to learn through solving problems. A final exam is available if so desired.
  1. Two text books:

The Biology of the Honey Bee . Mark L. Winston, 1987. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass.

The Beekeeper’s Handbook. Third Edition. Dianna Sammataro and Alphonse Avitable, 1998. Collier Books. Macmillan Publishing Company, New York.

We encourage you to purchase the texts online from popular book sellers. Both will be available as new or used books. Used books are very affordable. If so desired, we will supply the texts for you at our cost, plus shipping.   Contact us for details.

  1. On-line lectures that are supplemental to text material or very current topics in honey bee biology not found in the texts. Online course material is available in PDF.   You will need the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view or print it.  If you don't have Acrobat Reader, get it here or click on the Adobe Reader icon at the left.


This course has two major objectives:

1) teach you about honey bee biology;

2) provide enough information so you can begin beekeeping and,

3) improve your knowledge of apiculture.

     These objectives are closely related, because a good beekeeper must understand how a honey bee colony functions, and a good bee biologist should always consider how to apply new knowledge to apiculture.

Honey bees have been a source of continuous fascination for their honey, social organization, behavior, and their significance as pollinators of food crops. Above all we hope you find the material interesting and stimulating.

Getting Started:

A six-month access period to this online course is available for a fee of $100. Make your check payable to Honey Bee Biology at TAMU and send to:

Tanya Pankiw
Department of Entomology
Texas A&M University
College Station, TX 77843-2475

Send in a completed sign-up form with your check.  This form is a PDF file.  You will need the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view or print it.  If you don't have Acrobat Reader, get it here.