Bee-eaters Love Company

Southern Carmine Bee-eater (Merops nubicoides) by Africaddict

Southern Carmine Bee-eater (Merops nubicoides) by Africaddict

We have written several articles about the Bee-eaters, but they are so pretty and colorful, that they are being presented again. When the Lord created them, He did not spare on the “color pallet.” Nor did He fail to provide them with the ability to know how to remove the stinger and poison of the bees and other insects before eating them.

For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. (Colossians 1:16-17 KJV)

This video tells about how the Bee-eater cooperate together in communities. Trust you will enjoy watching it.

“The bee-eaters are a group of near-passerine birds in the family Meropidae. Most species are found in Africa and Asia but others occur in southern Europe, Australia, and New Guinea. They are characterised by richly coloured plumage, slender bodies, and usually elongated central tail feathers. All have long downturned bills and pointed wings, which give them a swallow-like appearance when seen from afar. There are 26 different species of bee-eaters.

As the name suggests, bee-eaters predominantly eat flying insects, especially bees and wasps, which are caught in the air by sallies from an open perch.[1] While they pursue any type of flying insect, honey bees predominate in their diet. Hymenoptera (ants, bees and wasps) comprise from 20% to 96% of all insects eaten, with honey bees comprising approximately one-third of the Hymenoptera.

Carmine BeeEater by Marc at Africaddict

Carmine BeeEater (Merops nubicus or nubicoides) by Marc at Africaddict

Before eating its meal, a bee-eater removes the sting by repeatedly hitting and rubbing the insect on a hard surface. During this process, pressure is applied to the insect thereby extracting most of the venom.[1] Notably, the birds only catch prey that are on the wing and ignore flying insects once they land.

Bee-eaters are gregarious. They form colonies by nesting in burrows tunnelled into the side of sandy banks, such as those that have collapsed on the edges of rivers. Their eggs are white and they generally produce 2-9 eggs per clutch (depending on species). As they live in colonies, large numbers of these holes are often seen together, white streaks from their accumulated droppings accentuating the entrances to the nests. Most of the species in the family are monogamous, and both parents care for the young, sometimes with the assistance of other birds in the colony.” (From Wikipedia)

Some of the articles we have done that mention the Bee-eaters are:

White-fronted Bee-eater – The Life Guards ~ by a j mithra

Avian Worship ~ a j mithra and Lee

Ian added the Rainbow Bee-eater to his album in his Spotted Harrier newsletter.

Also see his (Ian Montgomery’s) whole album of Bee-eater photos at – Family: Meropidae

European Bee-eaters are in Birds of the Bible – Johannesburg, South Africa

Mentioned in Birds of the Bible – Names of Birds

The Bee-eaters are in the Coraciiformes Order which included the Roller, Kingfisher, Todie, Motmot Families. The Meropidae Family is the one that contains the 26 Bee-eater species.

Chestnut-headed Bee-eater (Merops leschenaulti) by Nikhil Devasar

Chestnut-headed Bee-eater (Merops leschenaulti) by Nikhil Devasar

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