Most of us didn’t think much about bees when we were young, unless we were stung. As a result, you might mistakenly believe that “bees are those little yellow and black striped guys who sting and make Honey” You would be forgiven, but you would be wrong on nearly every point:

Bees come in a variety of sizes; not all bees have yellow and black stripes; the majority of bees you will likely interact with are female; not all bees sting humans—indeed, many of them are unable to sting at all; and not many bees produce Himalayan Honey in the traditional sense.

Honey Bees Western honey bees live in hives that are kept up by beekeepers and produce virtually all of the honey that humans consume worldwide. They almost never form wild colonies because they are not native to the United States. Therefore, if you observe one of these small bees in your neighborhood, it indicates that there is a beekeeper within about two miles.

Additionally, they won’t sting. According to Becky Griffin, a certified beekeeper from the Center for Urban Agriculture at the University of Georgia, “if you’ve been stung, it was most likely by a wasp such as a yellow jacket.”

Bumblebees are one of 49 distinct species of bees that are native to the United States. They are slightly larger than honey bees and have “fuzzy” yellow hair. Bumblebees are the only other kind of bee that the average American can name. Like bumble bees, they additionally live in huge settlements, however assemble their homes in the ground, not up in trees. Because they only produce enough honey to live on in their nest, they are not domesticated.

Carpenter Bees Right now, we’re a little bit into the unknown. You probably haven’t seen these ladies before if you’ve had an infestation, which are also known as wood bees. Like a termite, they can drill directly into wood—or use a power drill!— Moreover, they are significantly larger than other species of common bees.

Carpenter bees live by themselves. The purpose of drilling a hole in wood is to construct a nest for one’s offspring. They don’t need to produce honey because they don’t have a hive to feed.

However, not everything is about wood. They are essential pollinators, visiting thousands of flowers to collect pollen and nectar for food, like other bees. Despite their frightening appearance, they are extremely unlikely to sting.

Sweat Bees These minuscule bees got their name because they like the nutritious sweat of humans. In order for bees to survive, they must have access to water, preferably in small droplets or shallow puddles.) Because sweat bees are only one-fourth the size of Eucalyptus Honey bees, they move very quickly compared to bumblebees, which are slow.

They are also great pollinators because they can get inside even the tiniest flowers with their tiny bodies. However they gather bunches of nectar and dust, they don’t make honey. Similar to honey bees, only females are capable of stinging, and they are hesitant to do so. Don’t be alarmed if you see one zooming by; she’s just taking care of your garden.