Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Bumble bees

            Part of the yard here has been left wild, and there are different flowers that come up and bloom at different times of the year. Currently these tall white clusters of blooms are everywhere. I don't know what they are, but this is what the back yard looks like.

            Twined in between the stalks of the white flowers are these thin vines with clusters of purple flowers that look like this.

            Both kinds of flowers seem to be very attractive to bees and butterflies. I have seen honey bees and big fat bumble bees and swallowtail butterflies and monarch butterflies and black and white butterflies I'm not familiar with all over them. I've also seen another kind of bee that I've only ever seen in Maine. Mr. Riverdragon and I call them Copper-Butt Bees because they have this lovely tuft of copper colored fur on their rumps. They are actually called Orange Belted Bumble Bees according to the internet, but we like our name for them better. They look like this:

            Maybe sometime I can get a closer picture of one. They don't sit still long when there are tasty flowers to explore. I discovered in a previous summer that you don't want to step on them, because they give a nasty nasty sting. They sure are pretty, though, and I don't mind having them around. I just have to watch out where I put my feet! I would rather have a thriving bee population and watch my step than not have enough bees to pollinate the plants we depend on to provide us with food and beautiful flowers.

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