Quick Hit – In Flight over a Tulip

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Check out that pollen mess. And the shadow. I really like this shot.

Posting today in advance of attending the Arts Festival in St. George, Utah. It’s on Friday and Saturday of this week. Really hope to see and meet some of you there! I’ve got a bunch of neat stuff including the bees that you’re familiar with as well as some wild mustangs, wildlife from a trip to Yellowstone, and a bunch of remarkable birds that I photographed this winter. Stop by if you can.

Neat Bee Trick…New to Me

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She’s cleaning her tongue with her front legs as she’s flying. I’ve never seen that before. This photo isn’t as sharp as it could be, but the pollen on her tongue and in her pollen basket are both in sharp focus. Not sure I understand the rest. Shot at kind of a slow speed, compared, though. Anyway, I think it’s pretty neat to see her grabbing the pollen off her tongue as she flies. Always something new…

Bonus – Everyone Loves the Squills

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Including this black, thread-waisted wasp. Maybe not everyone. I learned that some say that the Siberian Squill is invasive and that it will take over a garden. So there’s that. Guess it depends some on the climate. They have kind of set up an autonomous zone under a cherry tree here…have to keep an eye ;).

Yesterday’s Bumble – Hunt’s Bumble Queen Over the Squills

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Apparently, this is a Hunt’s bumble queen. I usually call the Hunt’s “the bedhead bee” because it looks so unkempt. Apparently the queen pays more attention to her grooming than the other gals. Who knew? This one looks well kempt.

So stupid cold lately. 24 degrees as of this writing…which most likely means the bees will be hunkering down today. Spring in Utah. Shouldn’t complain. Beautiful, really.

First Bumble of the Year

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Admittedly not a great shot. The light is awful and I missed the focus on the bee by just a bit. BUT…it’s the first bumble I’ve seen and snapped this year. And there’s some value and joy in that for sure.

Oddly, it was 53 degrees this morning at 5:30 a.m. Now, at 9:40, it’s 43. Spring. Go figure. Looks like might be too cold for much bee shooting today.

That flower is a hellebore, by the way. It might be called Golden Sunrise, but I’m not completely certain.

Bonus – Spiders Do What Spiders Do

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Looks like this jumping spider made a successful jump. She had a really hard time getting the bee out of the tulip. Wrestled and wrestled with it. Tried a lot of paths out. I watched for maybe five minutes and got distracted. Checked an hour or so later and she’d finally pulled the bee away to somewhere. She sure had a hard time exiting the tulip, though. I know photos like this disturb some folks, but it’s all part of the dynamic of the garden – the dynamic of this world. And it deserves to be noticed.

Finally, a Shot of That Black Sweat Bee

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Been trying for a while to get good light on this particular bee. So tough to get any definition on this one, but seems it worked yesterday. Was a bit warmer. Today should be even better if I can manage some time to get out. Very few crocuses left but so many other things are starting to bloom now. The pollen in this shot is great.

Bonus – Contrasting Colors and a Wasp

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Paper wasp on a Siberian Squill. Lots of those lately. They seem to like what the squill has to offer. Or…maybe they’re just hunting because that’s where the other critters are currently. The orange-ey looking succulent is Sedum Angelina. One of my very favorites. Great ground cover. Today it’s mostly orange. But it can be green, brown, yellow, orange, or even red. Depending. One of the reasons I like it so much is that while it spreads everywhere fast (and keeps the weeds down, mostly), it’s pretty easy to remove. That’s not always the case with effective ground covers. So here’s a paper wasp face.

Beetongue on the Scabiosa

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Still too cold to be shooting and posting. Maybe tomorrow some fresh, current stuff. This one might have been gorgeous had the flower in the back not been past its prime. Bit of an odd composition, too. But a neat flower, a neat bee, and an interesting background. Really like this pincushion flower…except in the wind…and except when bumbles land on it. Tends to get a little flappy for photos. But it sure attracts the pollinators!