The Bee Propolis is produced from a substance called resins and is commonly known as Bee-Glue and Hive dross. Several trees secrete resins, a solid gluey substance, to protect and heal itself from any damage. Resins work as an immunity which protects trees and new buds from insect attacks, and viruses and bacteria.
Other than collecting the sweet nectar from flowers, honeybees also collect resins from the trees. The bees always work as a team as they know when to signal and perform waggle dance upon finding the rich source of resins, and discovering the day is warm and suitable enough to collect it.
When the worker bees stay in the hive and make honey, the other bees arrive carrying the resins stacked in their hind legs. The propolis is produced when the worker bees bite off the resin – the viscous substance – from resin bees’ legs and chew with saliva and beeswax; the beeswax is discharged from 8-wax supplying glands inside the stomach of bees.
The honeybees, for many years, have been brilliantly used propolis to cover their hive entrance to make use of its anti-bacterial properties. It is also used by bees to sterile the nest of queen bees to lay eggs.
When the worker bees find it too difficult to remove dead intruder insects, they mummify them to prevent decomposing. They store the rest of propolis for filling the cracks in the hive or for other sanitary purposes. On average, one honeybee produces 1/12th spoon of honey in its lifetime. It takes a long journey and process to produce propolis by these hardworking honeybees.