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The Secret Life Of Bees

Recently, over the last few weeks or so, there has been an incredible activity of bees and other pollinators near where we live, here in Mallorca. The constant humming noise is just beautiful, to me, anyway. And it’s nice to witness that nature is busy doing its thing, making sure that the cycle of life is forever evolving. Oh, wonderful Springtime.

I am constantly amazed how bees keep themselves busy collecting pollen and nectar from flowers. They use pollen as a protein source and nectar as a provenance of energy. As if by chance, some of the pollen lands on the pistils of the flower and results in cross-pollination. But nothing really is accidental in nature. The inadvertent pollination is, of course, important for flowers and some crops. The relationship between the plant and the insect is called symbiosis. How very clever.

Taking these photos of bees in action was probably the most difficult photographic task I have ever set myself. You want to use a telephoto lens, to really get near to the busy bee. But bees move ever so fast. With the long lens, it is pretty difficult to keep track and to hold still long enough for the resulting image to be in focus. Tricky it might have been, but it was fun and very rewarding too. For instance, I had never before seen an insect actually rolling inside a flower as if taking a bath, for the purpose of collecting all the pollen dust (see photo bottom). How very incredible and impressive these insects are. Makes one wonder, doesn’t it?

The photos were taken near Felanitx, Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The dates: April 4th, March 28th, and March 29th, 2010. The time was 16:43:42, 13:52:54 and 12:42:49, respectively .

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