Why Hexagons Are The Best Building Block For Bees and Their Hives

Honeycomb is hexagonal. Not circular. Not square. Not triangular. Why did bees settle on that particular shape? It was no accident; like many of their compatriots in the animal kingdom, it turns out the lil' insects are excellent mathematicians and stellar architects. The repeated pattern makes perfect sense when you take a closer look at the logistics of those alternatives.

Why Hexagons Are The Best Building Block For Bees and Their Hives

Nooope. Wasted space!

Why Hexagons Are The Best Building Block For Bees and Their Hives

Squares and triangles look like they could work, but the hexagon is the most efficient use of space and materials.

This cute TED-Ed animation offers a fun take on the lil' stingers' evolutionary history, and explains how, after much trial and error, the six-sided form emerged as the most efficient way to use the least amount of wax—which takes a lot of effort to produce—and store the most of their sweet, sweet honey. [Laughing Squid]