Tag Archives: Honey bee

Bountiful Bees

Today for me has been all about bees!

My bee socks and earrings. The Honeybee I plucked from the torment of my bedroom window and returned to the freedom of outdoors. The Red Mason Bees sunning themselves on the bricks of my house. It has given me a real feeling of spring!

It’s not the buzz of beautiful queen bumblebees that gets me excited. It is the tiny, unnoticed delightful solitary bees that fill me with glee!

I have already reached for my camera to photograph the bees this spring. Here are some of my highlights …

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#30DaysWild – Day 21 – The Great British Bee Count

As we are in the middle of 2018’s Great British Bee Count and it’s National Insect Week, I thought it was appropriate to go find some bees!

I was lucky enough to find Buff-tailed bumblebees, Red-tailed bumblebees, Ashy miner bees, Leaf-cutter bees, Honey bees and a few other species of solitary bees too! I submitted all my finds on the Great British Bee Count app.

An afternoon finding my favourite creatures and helping with a citizen science project has definitely been a lot of fun and felt very worthwhile!

Run by Friends of the Earth and supported by Buglife, it’s a great bit of citizen science to get involved with! If you would like to have a go, you can find out all about it on the website here: https://friendsoftheearth.uk/bee-count

Day 21

 

 

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For the love of Bees


Curled up cosy in my living room on Saturday night, under a blanket with a mug of tea. I couldn’t help but hear the howling gales and driving rain outside. Spring felt so far away!


I closed my eyes and began to imagine the warm sun on my face, the colours of the newly blossomed wildflowers and the sounds of busy little bees buzzing between them.


Bees … my mind lingered, thinking of those beautiful, furry, precious insects.


Warm fuzzy thoughts of Bees and spring inspired this blog!


It won’t be too long before those warm spring days and bees are upon us, something to look forward to during these cold, blustery winter storms.

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National Insect Week – day 3

Today’s insect photo is of a Honey Bee!
I have a particular soft spot for Honey Bees, as my Grandpa was a bee keeper. I have fond childhood memories of his bees. When I visited my Grandparents, I used to love to go and say hello to the hives at the end of their garden. I enjoyed watching them as a child and I still enjoy the company bees as an adult.

Honey Bee

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A little closer!

Christmas was kind to my camera! I had a few additional gadgets to add to my kit.

The first was a doubler to increase the telescopic length of my lens, bringing me that much closer to would-be distant wildlife. I was advised against a x2 zoom, some saying get a x1.4 zoom, others saying don’t bother at all. But I love my 2x zoom, it is testing my technical camera skills with great rewards.

Robin

My other gadget is a set of macro-tubes; placed between the camera body and lens to act as a magnifier. Again this is also testing my technical camera knowledge with great rewards. My first test drive was of the tubes was on fabrics. My first test on a living thing was of a crocus which I think looks a little like a Georgia O’Keeffe painting.

PashminaCrocus

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also got very lucky on Easter Sunday, a rare moment of sunshine brought the bees out of the hives and I got this lovely shot.

Honeybee

I’m sure I’m going to have more fun with these gadgets in the summer months in the mean time I’ll keep watching the migrants arrive and the buds unfurl!

Primrose in budLeaf in bud

Willow Warbler

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Eight Legged Freaks

Having used a spider photo in my previous blog, and after reading a blog @aBugBlog about spiders, I thought I would share a few of my favourite spider photos and memories!

Mary-Jane 2Mary-Jane 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mary-Jane 3Mary-Jane 4

 

 

 

 

 

Mary-Jane, an Orb Web Spider, named by my flatmate in honour of Spiderman‘s girlfriend/wife (depending on which graphic novel/film/cartoon you like!). She sat in our porch all winter, hunkered down, legs tucked in under her body. My flatmate recounts how I walked up to Mary-Jane one night – her front legs were splayed out, and as I approached saying ‘look at you all spread out’ I threw my arms out and went ‘RAGH’ at Mary-Jane in mimicry of her posture and attitude. This rather amused my flatmate who still likes to remind me of the day I forgot myself!

Garden SpiderGarden Spider and Ladybird

 

 

 

 

Garden Spider and WaspGarden Spider and Honeybee

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Autumn of 2010 saw the UK entertain a huge population of Garden Spiders; I was finding them everywhere as they dined on ladybirds, wasps and honeybees. Looking at these spiders was my turning point, I had never really taken to spiders till this influx. Taking a closer look I realised just how amazing these creatures are as my skin-crawling feeling dissipated.

Nursey Web Spider

Nursey Web Spider

Then, of course, we have Nursery Web Spiders. They are diligent parents, carefully carrying their huge white egg sacks underneath their grey and brown striped body.

Harvestman

Not all spiders are compacted tough looking things, some look delicate and intricate! I found these Harvestman on a walk at local Nature Reserve. I very nearly missed them even though they where sat right beneath an information sign!

Tiny Spider 1Tiny Spider 2

 

 

 

 

Tiny Spider 3Tiny Spider 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are tiny spiders that we walk past every day, so often ignored or unnoticed. It’s only when you take a closer look you appreciate the intricate pattern and beautiful structure of both the animal and its web!

Crab Spider

One weekend I headed out for a drive looking for somewhere nice to explore with my camera, and I didn’t get far before an opportunity arose to capture an image of a fascinating creature! This Crab Spider sat on my red car couldn’t have stood out more if it had tried!

Bonfire Spider

This delicate little spider, silhouetted against the orange light of a roaring bonfire caught my attention in the middle of a fireworks display! It is amongst my favourite photographs, in a set of photographs I call ‘Bonfire Spider’! I’ve never tried to make an identification of the species, I’ve never wanted to! Despite my scientific background, sometimes it’s okay to let a spider just be a spider!

House Spider

And finally, an Autumn Watch favourite, the House Spider! The spider that can make a pitter patter from walking on a plastic bag; set your watch to their daily patrol; climb your curtains. These are pets that allow you share their home!

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