‘The Honeybee and the Hexagon’, A TED-Ed Animation About Why Bees Make Hives Using Hexagonal Shapes

“The Honeybee and the Hexagon” is a TED-Ed lesson by educators Zack Patterson and Andy Peterson with animation by New York-based artist Lisa Bracio that explains why bees make their hives out of hexagonal shapes. The answer involves structural integrity, spacial efficiency, and mathematical bee genius.

[H]oneybees are, in fact, excellent mathematicians. Scientists claim that the tiny insects can calculate angles and can even comprehend the rounds of the Earth. But there’s particular mathematical bee genius behind the most important aspect of honeybee life: the hive.