Nature's Place

The Last Bee

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Before : resting undisturbed.

Click on the pix …

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Bigger than she looks.

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Not a comfortable mouthful for a night-time predator.

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And after : back to sleep.

Definitely the last Blue Banded Bee for this year. I have been trying to provide enough for her to survive but I think the cold may get her in the end. I even have a white bowl out with a blue sponge in the middle of it soaked in sugar solution, like a giant flower, so she doesn’t have to fly far first thing on a cold morning to fuel up – haven’t seen her take it yet.

The shots were taken in the dead of a cold night with a reflector under her, so there was less shadow below. It was just a piece of paper attached to the lens by elastic, a bit clumsy really but it worked to a point. I bumped her with it and she protested by spreading her legs that way, as if to say ‘I’m a bigger mouthful than I first looked, and you could choke on my sharp pointy bits’.

They do that when disturbed at night, if it’s cold enough that they don’t fly off to the light, make themselves look bigger. Many creatures do it, cause themselves to appear bigger than they are, or an uncomfortable mouthful, until the threat is gone.

It’s a working strategy people also employ when feeling threatened. Nature … it’s our nature after all.

© Mark Berkery ……. Click on those pictures for a closer look

Straggler …

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Click the pix, they open in a new tab and are meant to be seen a little bigger.

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… in a cold landscape. Too active until recently, too warm, too fast. They depend on temperature for their activity.

This one surrendered to the inevitable, or didn’t even notice as it wandered about the leaf litter one day.

Once on the twig it was only a matter of time before it stopped where I could get the angle.

Background is important too but you take what’s going and move on without stress.

Relaxed is important too …

© Mark Berkery ……. Click on those pictures for a closer look


Time Flies

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Click pictures for a bigger version, a better view.

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Just the two left now, out of 20 or so. The cold and scarcity of food has killed off most of the tribe of Blue Banded Bees.

Such is living in a seasonal world, and they have prepared for it by laying the seed of next years marvellous little creatures.

There is intelligence behind such design and planning, it’s not just a cascade of effects of effects of effects.


Work your way back to now, through the sensation, and before any effect is space.

That’s gotta be significant … a sense of space.

© Mark Berkery ……. Click on those pictures for a closer look


Banana Drama …

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Aggression as communication. Occasionally the giant beetle glanced in the ants direction. Well aware of each other.

*Click the pictures …

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Aware but not intimidated, armoured as she is. The ants were focussed on the beetle as she continued eating regardless.

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The ants settled down and now and then one would come to inspect the giant, perhaps to bathe in its quiet presence.

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At some point it all got disturbed and the beetle came to life, other than eating, and I got a few shots for the record.

The Chafer Beetles have had their fill, only one to the fermenting banana this week, and only for a day or so.

The little black ants are also retreating from the cold, plus it has been overcast for a couple days, so colder too.

Had a look just after sundown and there was a Gecko lapping up the banana juice, may account for the missing beetles.

Quite an active little world, the railing on the veranda.

© Mark Berkery ……. Click on those pictures for a closer look