Pete Seeger was a singer, folk-song collector and songwriter who died on Monday. He was 94. The NY Times wrote about his life -
He wrote, Where have all the Flowers Gone? (first two verses) - an anti-war song and many other well-known folk songs mentoring a whole generation of folk singers like, Bob Dylan, Don McLean and the Byrds to name a few.
I think of this song when I look at my many flowers I've photographed over the years. Many have bees aboard and I can't help but wonder, will we need a song that says, Where have all the Bees Gone? You'll be happy to know I'm not getting deep into the plight of the bees in this blog - I would like for others to be aware of the challenges the bees are facing to survive. Check out this site if you would like to know more about this subject. http://www.animalplanet.com/endangered-species/diminishing-bee-populations.htm.
Photographing flowers is one of my favorite subjects - the closer the better! It's great getting right on top of the flower and discovering that a bee is chowing down on pollen. They get their whole hairy bodies covered with yellow pollen storing more in their pollen sacks on their legs and bee's knees...sorry, had to use that phrase! But what is happening to them? There are several theories if you would like to study more about them...
http://www.arkive.org/honey-bee/apis-mellifera/image-A10950.html. I am perplexed about the red sacks attached to their legs or bodies. I believe they are parasites and different than the yellow pollen sacks. I'll try and show them in these images. Look for both!
I shot this onion flower in a massive and very prolific garden in Missoula, Montana. The sun was just coming up, which woke up the many bees and wasps that were sleeping on various flowers around the garden. There is a whole series of the flower which makes a triptych of images on a wall. My opening website page will show this as one of the three images on a wall, in a setting... www.kellishannon.com. I was using my 100 mm, 2.8L, 1:1, macro lens....my fav. BTW, this also was a McKinney Magazine cover shot
The Texas Bluebonnet with a beautiful bee. Those glorious fields of Bluebonnets bloom for such a brief period of time. There are fields of this great Texas State Flower all over Texas and most likely you will see photographers, families, and couples shooting in the blue and white fields. I was on my belly for this one with my 100 mm, macro lens again. I believe this is one from the gardens of Penny's on Legacy in Plano, TX. They come early in the spring so get ready, this is almost February and we aren't far away. Many more are on my site: www.kellishannon.com.
Here we go....there is the red thing attached to the bee's leg. I believe it is a parasite but I'm not 100% sure. I've tried to research it and my opinion is not conclusive. Would love to feedback from an expert. This shot was taken in Montana in the late spring when plant and flower color was short lived.
This bee had been asleep on this sunflower and I set up my tripod, waited, and then snapped away as soon as the soon warmed his little body. I never thought about where bees go at night, yet, seeing them all curled around the flowers in this garden really surprised me. They slowly stirred with the first light and started flying as soon as their wings were warmed by the sun. Very cool to see.
To me, nature is miraculous in so many ways.