So today I shot bees for a while. Sorted through the shots and figured I had about 200 or so that I could publish on the site (if I wanted to). Lots were similar to each other, of course, and that could be less than interesting. But I say that to point out that during the winter, when the bees are dormant, I do have lots of back catalog to use to come up with the daily bee.
That said, normally during the winter I scramble to find a new bee every day. That’s my habit, usually. That’s frustrating, though, in that the evenings seem to compress…and I run out of time. And bee posting can become a chore. So…frustrated with myself, I frontloaded February and March of this year – picked a shot for each day of those two months. Meant to take some pressure off myself. But…with the return of the bees (and posting “shot today” bees), I find the folder called “ready to post” burgeoning. Not that that’s a bad thing, but…
So…here’s the shot that I would have published today had the bees still been dormant (or I had not shot, etc.). It’s a great bumble (Hunt’s) on that pollen-throwing workhorse, the blanket flower. Bonus! Enjoy.
It tickles me – delights me – when I find pictures of the shadows of bees’ wings. Or a bee shadow on petals when the bee is in flight. When you write or draw with light (photo (light) graph (to draw or write)), literally, the shadows are such an important part of the whole. This isn’t a great example of shadows as part of the broader composition…but it’s neat for me to see. And the bee looks great. Those eyes!
But I’m told that some people like that. I tend to lighten the dark stuff quite a bit, but it might be a matter of taste. So I’m going to leave this one as-is just because it’s not my wont (want?). Ha! Very cute bee on a very pretty blanket flower. I especially like the veins in the wings in this one. Nature’s stained glass window template.
Wish I knew which one this is. Might be Mesa Peach. But might not. Have a few different varieties that I picked up here and there. And I think they morph a little through time, too. One very red one didn’t get much action this year…or I didn’t get many photos of the action that happened. Interested to see if/how they seed next year.
No set date yet for the gallery opening. Hoping for sometime in November – complete with a new website for stuff other than/including bees. Will continue with this one, too, of course.
No shooting again today. But some snowflakes. Here’s one from earlier this week on the persistent blanket flowers. They’ll be around for a while yet. Mid-60s next week so there’s hope for some more bee fun before winter overwhelms.
Once these start in the late spring, they just don’t quit. Here’s a great look at a honeybee in the blanket flowers which are in the (relatively) new parking strip garden. Sure it’s getting cooler. Sure it’s fall. But all of these lifeforms have no quit in them. Guess the hard freeze will knock them out, but that doesn’t detract from the point. They just go.
Current festival: On Saturday, Sunday, and Monday (September 4-6), I’ll be in Avon, Colorado in Nottingham Park with my art. Stop by and have a look. Bonus here is that on Monday night, Los Lobos will be playing a free show.
I generally prefer a head-on or true profile shot. This one is like a one quarter shot, but the focus is good all the way along…from the end of the abdomen to the eye and antennae. And it’s probably good to see the little ones from all angles. And there’s that blanket flower again. If you’ve been on the site for a while you’ll know I’m a big fan of these flowers – and one of the many, many reasons is that they attract all sorts of pollinators. Seems some flowers are more geared to one type of bee or another. And there’s nothing at all wrong with that. Everyone needs to eat where they can. But…having something that attracts all has great value, too. And the blanket flower is one of those. A (native) longhorn in this case.
So today I got the nicest email from a regular visitor to the site. She mentioned that she enjoyed the site, thanked me for the pictures and posts, and told me that she’d found and purchased some of the Gaillardia Mesa Peach (blanket flowers) in order to better attract (and provide for) bees – and reported her (and their) success in glowing words.
That note really made my day. So gratifying on so many levels. Thank you!
So…for today…I went out a few minutes ago and grabbed this shot. Patty, this one’s for you:
Loving the colors in this one. The background. The shapes.
One thing I’d like you to notice is the apparent age of the worker bee. Although the queens live five to seven years (give or take) the worker bee has a lifespan of just about six weeks after she leaves the hive and becomes a collector of pollen and nectar (she spends a bit of time before that caring for things within the hive).
If you look at this one, you might notice a couple of things: First, she’s lost most of her hair on her thorax. It’s nearly bare. That happens as they age. The next is the shape her wings are in. You can see that the ends of her wings are tattered. She’s literally worn them out.