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in the deposition of eggs, as well as to attack her enemies; and with what terrible effect she employs the instrument for the latter purpose, we shall see hereafter.
And now, reader, having concluded our review of these various organs and members, we would ask you to reflect for an instant upon what we have together examined.
Can you imagine that all these wonderful contrivances, the superficial account of which has occupied two chapters ;—that the mysterious antennæ, studded over with innumerable organs of
the eyes, composed of 4000 lesser organs of vision, as perfect in their construction as our most highly prized philosophical instruments; the oral apparatus, consisting of shears, and saws, and cutting blades; the curious legs, provided with baskets for the conveyance of food to the hive, and pliers to aid in the construction of that dwelling; the wings, formed not only as members of locomotion, but also to fulfil the important process of ventilation; and, lastly, the sting, with its poisoned barbed lance ;-can you conceive, we say, that all these remarkable mechanisms exist upon the common Honey-Bee, which you have many a time brushed from your window-pane when it dared to venture inside your dwelling?
So, however, it is; and you have perhaps thought no more of these various wonders in the little tration of the poison-sac, which is situated within the abdomen, about c, fig. 5, Pl. VI. Pl. VIII. fig. 2,p represents one of the secreting tubes.
honey-maker than of the insect itself when you sat down at your breakfast-table to enjoy the sweet fruits of its labours, in which these very instruments were employed !
But rest assured that the consideration of the various appliances wherewith the Bee is furnished (the greater portion of which can be easily distinguished even with a pocket lens) would in no way detract from the enjoyment of the sweets that they help to produce; and let us therefore recommend them, when the opportunity next presents itself, to your careful study and investigation.
INTERNAL ANATOMY OF THE BEE.ORGANS OF DIGESTION.
GASTRIC TEETH.-RESPIRATORY SYSTEM.-SPIRACLES
BREATHING-HOLES, AND TRACHEÆ OR AIR-TUBES.—THEIR BEAUTIFUL CONSTRUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION THROUGH
THE BODY.- NERVOUS AND CIRCULATING SYSTEMS: THEIR
RELATIVE POSITION IN THE BEE. - DORSAL VESSEL
PHENOMENA OF CIRCULATION. - NERVOUS SYSTEM --ORGANS
OF REPRODUCTION IN THE QUEEN-BEE.-—OVARIES, ETC. — METHOD WHEREBY THE EGGS ARE FERTILIZED, AND REMARKABLE POWER OF REPRODUCTION IN THE VIRGIN QUEEN. -STING.–UNITY OF DESIGN IN THE BEE'S STRUCTURE,
If we have found in the external structure of the Bee interesting subjects of observation and inquiry, so shall we also be able to discover in its internal physiology features that are equally deserving of our careful attention.
Here, however, the magnifying lens alone will not suffice, and we must first borrow the scalpel of the anatomist, and penetrating the solid integument of chitine that forms the external supporting frame of the insect, to which the various muscles are attached, we must lay open the several divisions of its body, and then examine them through the scrutinizing medium of the lens.
In so doing, we shall have to proceed upon a different plan from that employed in making ourselves acquainted with the character of the external organs and members; for whilst these were local, each having its appointed place upon some special portion of the body, the nervous, respiratory, circulating, and digestive systems, will all be found to occupy a more or less prominent position in each of the three sections; the reproductive organs alone being confined to the abdominal segments.
Whilst examining the oral apparatus, or mouth of the Bee, we had occasion to consider and describe a variety of instruments to whose action the food is subjected before its admission into the body; and we shall now follow it in its course through the digestive system, dwelling for a while upon each organ through which it is obliged to pass. The nutriment of the Bee is of a varied kind, being sometimes solid, as the Bee-bread or pollen, and at others consisting of liquid honey. In either case, it must first enter the oesophagus or gullet (Pl. VII. fig. 1, a), a portion of the digestive system analogous to the throat in the higher animals : this canal or tube traverses the whole length of the thorax, and leads into the first stomach (6), the crop, paunch, or honey-bag, as it is variously denominated.
Should the food consist of the nectar of flowers, it is probable that, after being retained in the honeybag until the Bee has found its way back to the hive, it will be regurgitated into the cells of the
honeycomb, and there add food to the general store; but if solid, and destined for the nourishment of the insect itself, it passes down into the true stomach (c), where it comes under the influence of what are called the gastric teeth, and undergoes a second mastication while being digested.
These gastric teeth, which are formed of silica, and are consequently very hard, are present not only in the stomach of the Bee, but in many other insects, even in those that subsist on liquid nutriment; in the Blow-fly and Butterfly, for instance, which suck the juices of plants, &c., their structure is very complicated, for, although of delicate proportions, they have a curiously branched form.
This may appear a somewhat superfluous endowment on the part of Nature, and you will perhaps be inclined to ask, what can be the use of these diminutive teeth where the food is of such a character as to need no mastication ? A little reflection will, however, show that it is in those very insects which subsist on liquid food that they are the most wanted, for, since they possess (as in the instances just quoted) no masticating organs at the mouth, there is all the more necessity for some internal contrivance to reduce the solid alimentary particles that may enter at the throat, either accidentally, or in consequence of the food being of a rather more consistent nature than usual; and for every such contingency Nature makes due provision. Now, in the Bee the gastric apparatus is very simple, probably for the opposite reason