The Birds and the Bees – June 2012

The last of the June 2012 updates, I begin with my favorite birds,  The Tree Swallows.

These are not cropped much. They are still letting me get very close.
These are not cropped much. They are still letting me get very close.
As I write this (mid-July), the swallows in Woodland Park (where I work) are already feeding their young - pictures to follow - so I presume these guys will soon do the same.
As I write this (mid-July), the swallows in Woodland Park (where I work) are already feeding their young – pictures to follow – so I presume these guys will soon do the same.
This is from near the nest, when I was out on one of my bug safaris.
This is from near the nest, when I was out on one of my bug safaris.
They both eyed with a little more interest than they do when perched on the deck.
They both eyed with a little more interest than they do when perched on the deck.
I think this particular shot is of one adult bringing food to the adult sitting on the eggs. I see them swap that particular duty (or at least it looks like it).
I think this particular shot is of one adult bringing food to the adult sitting on the eggs. I see them swap that particular duty (or at least it looks like it).
This is five days after the last picture . . . they seem more apprehensive about my proximity . . . perhaps the young have hatched.
This is five days after the last picture . . . they seem more apprehensive about my proximity . . . perhaps the young have hatched.

There is a small gallery (11 photos) of these birds.  Click HERE to go to SmugMug.

I already have both pictures and movies of the Woodland Park swallows feeding their young, and I hope to capture some of these guys doing the same . . . but that will be for a future post.

There is someone in England who might enjoy these next photos.

I think this is a bee on a pansy. I mean, I know it is a bee, but I think it's on the stalk of a pansy.
I think this is a bee on a pansy. I mean, I know it is a bee, but I think it’s on the stalk of a pansy.

My original plan was to identify all the bees.  I think I know what they all are, but I’m pressed for time, and I don’t want to go back and tag each picture.  Suffice it to say they are all bees.  Honey bees, carpenter bees, Bee Gees . . . all sorts of bees.

Bees kept landing on the pansies, and then proceeded to look high . . .
Bees kept landing on the pansies, and then proceeded to look high . . .
. . . look low . . .
. . . look low . . .
Then look high again . . . and then fly off.
Then look high again . . . and then fly off.
This one was more persistent.  It looked under the petals . . . .
This one was more persistent.
It looked under the petals . . . .
. . . climbed to another flower and looked on top of the petals . . .
. . . climbed to another flower and looked on top of the petals . . .
. . . then between the petals . . .
. . . then between the petals . . .
. . . then it saw something . . .
. . . then it saw something . . .
. . . and it dived in!
. . . and it dived in!
. . . only to come out again and look under the petals again.
. . . only to come out again and look under the petals again.
I took a closer look, and it appeared it was giving a good talking-to at the beard-like protrusions.
I took a closer look, and it appeared it was giving a good talking-to at the beard-like protrusions.
It then mooned the flower, and took off.
It then mooned the flower, and took off.

The bees on the Salvia were faring a little better . . . 

To me it seemed like different bees were hitting the same flowers, but apparently there was enough there to keep them busy.
To me it seemed like different bees were hitting the same flowers, but apparently there was enough there to keep them busy.
This was on a OneSided Penstemon flower, and really took its job seriously
This was on a OneSided Penstemon flower, and really took its job seriously
I feared the flower would snap shut and digest the bee . . .
I feared the flower would snap shut and digest the bee . . .
. . . but no . . . it made it out and left.
. . . but no . . . it made it out and left.
Despite the stalks swaying in the wind, I managed to get a few good pictures.
Despite the stalks swaying in the wind, I managed to get a few good pictures.
I know at least one blogger who will enjoy these.
I know at least one blogger who will enjoy these.

OK, so maybe a few more people will like them . . . the SmugMug gallery has more pictures (40 photos), and can be reached by clicking on any of the pictures, or clicking HERE.

Personally, I would like to get a bit more depth of field. The Bluebeard bush is just about flowering, so I'll have another crack at capturing the little devils.
Personally, I would like to get a bit more depth of field. The Bluebeard bush is just about flowering, so I’ll have another crack at capturing the little devils.
These big bees are some of the hardest to photograph. They always seem to manage to hide their facial features . . .
These big bees are some of the hardest to photograph. They always seem to manage to hide their facial features . . .
It's interesting how they maneuver about and in the flower.
It’s interesting how they maneuver about and in the flower.
This is the closest I came to capturing a decent bee in flight, so I'm using it despite the poor quality.
This is the closest I came to capturing a decent bee in flight, so I’m using it despite the poor quality.
The Salvia flowers were a veritable bee gold mine.
The Salvia flowers were a veritable bee gold mine.
I do like the detail on the bees . . .
I do like the detail on the bees . . .
. . . for one thing I never knew they were so hirsute . . . they are hairier than Robin Williams.
. . . for one thing I never knew they were so hirsute . . . they are hairier than Robin Williams.
But you got to love the Popeye-styled forelimbs.
But you got to love the Popeye-styled forelimbs.
Bees earn a high level of respect from me . . .
Bees earn a high level of respect from me . . .

. . . they are dedicated, hard-working, and unselfishly putting the hive ahead of themselves. They don’t get lavish pensions, or expect rewards. I’ve not known them to lie, cheat, or steal. Nor to profit from the work of others.

In short, they are everything politicians are not.

This is not a very clear shot, but I included it because of the tattoo on the forelimb which says "I Was Born to Bumble" . . .
This is not a very clear shot, but I included it because of the tattoo on the forelimb which says “I Was Born to Bumble” . . .

. . . it doesn’t, but you went and looked, right? I almost added one in Photoshop, but then I thought:  “It wouldn’t be in English! It would be written in Bee-speak, probably something like Bzz bz BBzzzz.

And that was my Birds and the Bees post.  As I said, the SmugMug album has more pictures (40 photos to be exact), and the photos look best at X3 or Original magnification.

Once again, thanks for perusing my stuff.

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