Agapostemon Sweat Bee
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This is one of the ground dwelling pollinator bees, also known as a metallic green bee. This particular bee was so busy doing his systematic and methodical collecting that very little could disturb him. However, the name sweat bee comes from their affinity for human sweat that they sometimes seek out.
This is a typical photograph of these bees, the kind you see in books. It was this photograph that made me think more about the photography of bees and wasps. The closer I got to them, and the more people told me about different types of wasps and bees e.g paper wasps that produce papier-mâché to make their impressive hives, the more I thought about taking more photographs of these creatures.
Books and websites are full of excellent photographs of bees and wasps. Most take the taxonomical, clinical view from the side or top down (dorsal). In some cases you see portraits, most but not all are of specimens that are ‘in the lab”, frozen, pinned etc.. Dead animals lose their color, sheen and character.
Looking closely at the bee’s head you can see small bumps these are the “simple eyes”. The larger textured eyes are compound eyes that sense patterns and polarized light. The furry hair is what collects the pollen you can see over much of its body. These are some of things that are lost to a degree in a clinical photograph and it’s why I intend to take more photographs of bees and wasps whenever I get the chance.