Nature's Place


Down on the pebbled concrete at the foot of the stairs, where the recent Curlew stood.

*Click on the pictures for a proper look … and click again

A male, from the five stripes across its body. He made every effort to take to the air.

After watching him fall again and again I lent a hand. The one he’s standing on above.

A leaf afforded more opportunity for a few shots, within reach and firm enough for his weight.

From the other side and above it is clear the pollen sacks stuck to his back have been torn.

And all the while his tongue is hanging down and unsheathed, not its usual position or condition.

The one mandible visible here and above is clearly ok and in place. But in other images its opposite is clearly out of place, maybe tucked behind the tongue sheath causing it to hang – can’t really tell.

A few items on the table were good for colour, while he stood still. The blue suits him, nice contrast, all the better to appreciate his form. Weird and wonderful little fellow.

Moving and stopping, to and fro, made for an exercise in capturing available backgrounds from varying angles.

And variations thereof … uncluttered imagery. No emotion or thinking to distract from the simple being, or form.

G’day mate …

How’s it going …

A Blue Banded Bee. I found him on the ground below the flowers. He was far from home but behaved as if new from the nest, struggling to take flight as if just born with some unseen impediment. But perhaps it was acquired in flight on a windy day.

He seemed energetic enough, and whole except for the hanging tongue and the apparently missing mandible, had come from some ways to the flowers. But here couldn’t get into the air for more than a few seconds before falling back to earth.

The yellow on his back reminded me of how orchids will leave a sack of pollen on the backs of visiting insects, bees and wasp and such small flying creatures. What this was I think.

However, I gave him a hand, literally and by an available leaf to climb on. Often a bee having trouble at ground level will be successful from a higher vantage.

But no, was not to be, he just kept falling. So I brought him to the veranda table upstairs and set him up for a few shots before feeding him some sugar water.

He took lengthening breaks but he never gave up, always at the ready. And while I was momentarily distracted he disappeared. Into the wild …

He had done his job for the orchid, though he wasn’t done yet.

Just beyond the shade of knowing.

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



12 Responses

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  1. kopfundgestalt said, on 01/11/2020 at 10:28 am

    Great . I Think i found this bee 3 years ago for the First time in sardinia.

  2. sleroyable said, on 28/04/2019 at 10:47 am

    What an amazing story. The photos are beautiful and your way of just being there is inspiring.

  3. pflanzwas said, on 27/04/2019 at 7:54 am

    Wonderful pictures again of a beautiful bee! I am glad it disappeared into the wild. They are tougher then they look. The “fur” is almost unbelievable, incredible the mask of his front face. What a little wonder-bee :-) Thanks for showing! Almuth

    • Mark said, on 27/04/2019 at 2:30 pm

      Well dressed princes of the gardens airways, serving the silky beauty as they go.

      Thanks Almuth.

  4. treesshrubs said, on 26/04/2019 at 9:26 am

    Truly an amazing story and journey for the bee. How kind and patient you are…if only there were more humans that lived with awareness and kindness.

    • Mark said, on 26/04/2019 at 11:58 am

      The way it is we need the dark to see the light, it’s a world of contrast. Maybe one day – in evolutionary terms – the dark won’t be necessary any more, we will instinctively know the pain of being other than light and never go there again.

      Until next time … our world is cyclical after all – the way beautiful flowers grow and die, they start in the crawling muck.

  5. ecopoet said, on 26/04/2019 at 9:03 am

    Wonderful post

  6. johnsonmd13 said, on 26/04/2019 at 7:09 am

    Yeah. I wonder about the yellow mass on her back. Your (always excellent) photos seem to show that the “hairs” in that region are missing or extremely flattened. Wonder if the yellow stuff could be fungal.


    • Mark said, on 26/04/2019 at 11:53 am

      I’m pretty sure the yellow is a pollen packet deposited there when he exited an orchid. It’s a way orchids distribute pollen, ingenious nature. BTW, the hairs on that part of a bee are often worn down by their action of entry and exit of such designed flowers.

      Thanks J…

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