Functions of Hemolymph

Hemolymph is a reservoir of water and chemicals for the body. Hemolymph supplies digested molecules as nutrients and water from ingested water, honey and nectar as well as ions, hormones, and cells of the immune system to muscles and organs surrounding the hemocoel. Hemolymph transports carbon dioxide to be eliminated through the respiratory organs, gut and cuticle. Hemolymph also distributes heat around the body and aids dissipating metabolic heat to the outside. Hemolymph acquires wastes as the breakdown products of metabolism from the surfaces of cells and organs lining the hemocoel. The excretory organs, the Malphigian tubules, remove these wastes from the hemolymph by filtering and passing them into the gut to be excreted with feces. The water of the hemolymph is about twenty percent of the body water of the bee, but percentages vary. In larvae, the hemolymph may hold up to fifty percent of a bee's body water (Chapter 9).

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