Honeybee is one of the most familiar insects as they play an important role in the human and natural world. More has been written about honeybees than any other species of insect. The human fascination with this insect began thousands of years ago when people discovered what wonderfully tasty stuff honey is!
Apis cerana indica, a subspecies of honey bee, also known as Eastern honeybees or Indian honeybees. A. c. indica is one of the important pollinating agents for coconuts and palms.
Honeybees have prominent yellow stripes to warn potential predators that they have a weapon to defend themselves. Their weapon is a modified ovipositor [egg-laying tube]. This is combined with a venom gland to create a stinger located at the end of the abdomen. Because the stinger is modified from a structure found only in females, male bees can not sting.
As social insects, honeybees live in elaborate nests, hives, containing up to 20,000 individuals. They work together in a highly structured social order or castes. The different castes are: queens, drones and workers.
There is only one queen in a hive and her main purpose in life is to make more bees.
Drones are males, have no stinger. Only a few hundred in a colony and their sole function is to mate with the queen.
Worker bees do all the different tasks needed to maintain and operate the hive. They make up the vast majority of the hive’s occupants and they are all sterile females. When young, they are called house bees and work in the hive doing comb construction, brood rearing, tending the queen and drones, cleaning, temperature regulation and defending the hive.
Older workers are called field bees. They forage outside the hive to gather nectar, pollen, water and certain sticky plant resins used in hive construction. Workers are about 12 mm long and highly specialized for what they do. They have a straight, barbed stinger which can only be used once. It rips out of their abdomen after use, which kills the bee.
I am glad to learn that Apis cerana indica are less aggressive than any wild bees. I won’t be as scared as earlier today  when I took these photos.
Sweet scent of the Areca palm [Areca catechu], ‘betel nut’ flowers attracted these honeybees. Areca palm, slender palm typically reaching 10–20 m [33–66 ft] tall is one of the popular die-hard trees planted in small gardens around HDB flats, which also cleanse the air.