Pollinator Week — Bees

One of the pollinators we are most familiar with are bees. I love to take pictures of these gals — no idea why. But they have given me some of my very best photos.

Bees are special among insects because they are covered in hairs. The hairs pick up pollen for them.

Native bee on musk
thistle, covered in pollen.

Bees go from flower to flower gathering pollen. You see how this bee has been dusted with it. As she moves from flower to flower, some of the pollen she’s picked up elsewhere will come off and fertilize the plant’s seeds. That’s the payoff for the flowers.

Metallic green bee on sunflower.

But soon she’ll take a moment to groom herself, packing the pollen into gummy packets.

Bumble bee gathering pollen.

This bumble bee has packed the pollen onto special spots on her legs — see the yellow doughy stuff? This keeps her clean, and keeps the pollen from drifting away as she flies. She gets to take that dough home. That’s the payoff for the bees. Everybody’s happy!

Published by Amy Law

Amy Law is a science geek. She feels about science the way some people feel about music, or art, or sports – a total and complete emotional connection. She thinks in science. For Amy, there’s nothing better than helping people see the beauty of science as she does. She loves to untangle a complicated subject into its parts, explaining it so that anybody can understand what’s happening. Let her show you her world...

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