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Posts Tagged ‘bumblebee’

How much pollen can a bee transport at one time? As it circled the inside of a sunflower, this bee filled the pollen baskets on its hind legs with so much bright yellow pollen that I was afraid it would not be able to lift off and fly away. In addition to the very full pollen baskets, which looked like cotton candy to me, the bee was virtually covered with grains of pollen. My fears proved to be unfounded, and the overladen bee was able to carry away its golden treasure.

I think this bee is a bumblebee, though I am no expert on the subject of bees. According to Wikipedia, certain species of bees, including bumblebees and honeybees, have pollen baskets (also known as corbiculae) that are used to harvest pollen. Other bee species have scopae (Latin for “brooms”), which are usually just a mass of hair on the hind legs that are used to transport pollen.

bee pollen

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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Although it is already October and the weather is getting cooler, the local bees have not yet called it quits for the season. I am not sure what kind of purple flower this is, but the bumblebee was busily burrowing its head into its open blossoms.

I was happy to be able to catch the bee in action, capturing an “artsy” image of the moment.

October bee

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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With rain and gray skies that started today, I feel the need to compensate with some bright colors, so I thought I’d post an image from this past weekend. I love the way that it looks like this bumblebee is clinging to a rolling red ball, which, of course, is merely the center of a flower in the garden of my neighbor and fellow photographer Cindy Dyer.

bee_fall_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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One of the advantages to living in a relatively southern state is that summer lingers on for a bit longer and flowers continue to bloom. As long as there are flowers blooming, bees continue in their efforts to gather pollen,

I am not sure what flower this is, but it was blooming in the garden of one of my neighbors, Cindy Dyer, a fellow photographer and blogger. She plants her garden with an eye toward plants that will photograph well and when I have a few minutes to spare, I enjoy making a quick trip to her garden to see what is blooming.

When I first spotted it, I had this mental picture of the bee working in the center of the flower, surrounded by a protective little fence.  I tried to frame the shot with that picture in mind and chose an angle that emphasized the “fence.”

Sep_bee_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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Although it is already September and signs of autumn are starting to appear, bees continue to be as busy as ever. The blooming morning glory flowers in my neighbors’ garden attracted a bee’s attention early yesterday morning and I got these shots as it tried to figure out the optimal strategy for gathering pollen.

glory2_blogglory3_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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The sunflower was big enough that an Eastern Tiger Swallowtail butterfly (Papilio glaucus) and a bumblebee could peacefully coexist, though it looks like they had each carved out their individual spheres of influence and kept a respectful distance from each other.

coexistence_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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How do you approach each day? Do you embrace it with all of your energy, like this bumblebee seems to be doing as it leaps into a patch of Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa)? Most mornings, my body needs the stimulation of coffee and bright colors like those in this photo have the same effect in awakening my other senses.

I had never seen Butterfly Weed until a few days ago, when I encountered it at a local garden, and I was immediately captivated by its vibrant color. According to Wikipedia, it is a species of milkweed native to North America that attracts butterflies and hummingbirds (and obviously bees too).

I love the unusual position of this bee. It looks like he is skydiving, gliding through the air.

orange_bee_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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