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Insect predators of western honey bees include the Asian giant hornet and other wasps, robber flies, dragonflies such as the green darner, some praying mantises, water striders and the European beewolf.

Arachnid predators of western honey bees include fishing spiders, lynx spiders, goldenrod spiders[72] and St. Andrew's cross spiders.

Reptile and amphibian predators of western honey bees include the black girdled lizard, anoles, and other lizards, and various anuran amphibians including the American toad, the American bullfrog and the wood frog.

Specialist bird predators of western honey bees include the bee-eaters; other birds that may take western honey bees include grackles, hummingbirds, fishing spiders, lynx spiders, goldenrod spiders[72] and St. Andrew's cross spiders.

Reptile and amphibian predators of western honey bees include the black girdled lizard, anoles, and other lizards, and various anuran amphibians including the American toad, the American bullfrog and the wood frog.

Specialist bird predators of western honey bees include the bee-eaters; other birds that may take western honey bees include grackles, hummingbirds, tyrant flycatchers and the summer tanager. Most birds that eat bees do so opportunistically; however, summer tanagers will sit on a limb and catch dozens of bees from the hive entrance as they emerge.[73]

Mammals that sometimes take western honey bees include bears, opossums, raccoons, skunks, the North American least shrew and the honey badger.

As an invasive species, feral western honey bees are a significant environmental problem in non-native areas. Imported bees may displace native bees and birds, and may also promote reproduction of invasive plants ignored by native pollinators.[74]

Honey bees are not native to the Americas, arriving with colonists in North America in the 18th century. Thomas Jefferson mentioned this in his the Americas, arriving with colonists in North America in the 18th century. Thomas Jefferson mentioned this in his Notes on the State of Virginia:

The honey-bee is not a native of our continent. Marcgrave indeed mentions a species of honey-bee in Brasil. But this has no sting, and is therefore different from the one we have, which resembles perfectly that of Europe. The Indians concur with us in the tradition that it was brought from Europe; but, when, and by whom, we know not. The bees have generally extended themselves into the country, a little in advance of the white settlers. The Indians therefore call them the white man's fly, and consider their approach as indicating the approach of the settlements of the whites.[75]

Honey bees have become an invasive species in the US, outcompeting native pollinators when resources are tight.[76] With an increased number of honey bees in a specific area due to beekeeping, d

Honey bees have become an invasive species in the US, outcompeting native pollinators when resources are tight.[76] With an increased number of honey bees in a specific area due to beekeeping, domesticated bees and native wild bees often have to compete for the limited habitat and food sources available.[77] Western honey bees may become defensive in response to the seasonal arrival of competition from other colonies, particularly Africanized bees which may be on the offence and defence year round due to their tropical origin.[78] In the United Kingdom, honey bees are known to compete with native bumblebees such as Bombus hortorum, because they forage at the same sites. To resolve the issue and maximize both their total consumption during foraging, bumblebees forage early in the morning, while honey bees forage during the afternoon.[79]

Most flower

Most flowering plants depend on specialized pollinators to efficiently fertilize them. Cucurbits, for example, are pollinated by squash bees that specifically visit the early-blooming male flowers before sunrise, when honey bees are inactive, and then return to pollinate the female flowers later in the day. Such symbiotic relationships also mean that the specialized pollinator will be covered mainly in its host's specific pollen.[citation needed]

The very generalized nature of the honey bee's nectar-gathering activities, potentially visiting dozens of different species in a single day, means that a flower visited by a honey bee will often get very little pollen from its own species. This diminished pollination can reduce the plant's ability to produce seeds, especially when the honey bees are squeezing out the native pollinators for a species, a problem occurring all over the United States because of honey bees and other invasive species.[80][81]

Unlike native bees, they do not properly extract or transfer pollen from plants with pore anthers (anthers which only release pollen through tiny apical pores); this requires buzz pollination, a behavior rarely exhibited by honey bees. Honey bees reduce fruiting in Melastoma affine, a plant with pore anthers, by robbing its stigmas of previously deposited pollen.[82]

Apart from Apis mellifera, there are six other species in the genus Apis. These are Apis andreniformis, Apis cerana, Apis dorsata, Apis florea, Apis koschevnikovi, and Apis nigrocincta.[83] These species all originated in southern and southeastern Asia. Only Apis mellifera is thought to have originated in Europe, Asia, and Africa.[84]

See also