Tag Archives: bees

Busy Little Bee

Cape Honey Bee on Honeysuckle 1

Haiku 244

Busy Little Bee

Buzz from flower to flower

Pollinate away!

.

Cape Honey Bee on Honeysuckle 2

Hard to believe it is winter here in Cape Town, when the honeysuckle is in full bloom.

And bees are hard at work collecting nectar and pollen, while pollinating the colourful flowers for the next generation.

Cape Honey Bee on Honeysuckle 3

This little guy is a Cape Honey Bee  Apis mellifera capensis and is indigenous to South Africa.

 

Unusual Visitor!

Violet Carpenter Bee 1

Violet Carpenter Bee 1

Look what I found buzzing around in the garden the other day. Well, actually Little Monkey found it first. I chased her inside in case she tried to eat it!

Violet Carpenter Bee 2

Violet Carpenter Bee 2

It was a massive insect and clearly having some trouble, as it flapped around on the ground, occasionally buzzing in my direction and causing me to spring back with my camera!

At first I thought it was a Blue Black Hairy Flower Wasp.

On further investigation I think it is more likely a Carpenter Bee.

Specifically, a Violet Carpenter Bee, Xylocopa violacea.

I thought, “Shame man. Poor bee struggling in this wind,” and I put some sugar water out for it. It went straight to it, but I didn’t see it drink.

Violet Carpenter Bee 3

Violet Carpenter Bee 3

Then I went back inside and read some more about this amazing insect. Apparently they emerge now, at the end of winter or beginning of spring. “Oh, that’s interesting,” I mused. “Maybe it’s just emerged from a dead tree somewhere.”

Violet Carpenter Bee 4

Violet Carpenter Bee 4

I then found out that they bore massive holes in dead wood. “That’s cool,” I think, “I’m sure there’s plenty of dead wood around the neighbourhood.”

Then I thought; “Hey, wait a minute. All my window frames and doors, not to mention all my furniture inside the house, are wood; dead wood! Ooopsie. What have I done?”

I checked outside again, but the Violet Carpenter Bee had buzzed off!

Hopefully to a new destination, far away from my dead wood.

 

post script: On the fascinating subject of insects, did you know that there was a new type of beetle discovered in Cape Town last year? 

 

Up Close and Personal

Busy Bee 1

Busy Bee 1

I noticed quite a commotion by my Camellia bush the other day when I was out in the garden.

On closer inspection, I saw lots of bees buzzing around.

Busy Bee 2

Busy Bee 2

They crawled all over the newest buds.

Busy Bee 3

Busy Bee 3

Collecting pollen madly, and storing it on their back legs.

Busy Bee 4

Busy Bee 4

It was such a great spectacle, that even an ant came to watch!

 

post script: These photos were taken with my trusty old Canon, held at arm’s-length right in the heart of the bush, hoping that the pollen would be more attractive to the bees, than me!