The oldest bee

I spotted my first male Hairy-footed Flower Bee in the garden on the 26th March, a handsome male with gingery fur and pristine sparkling wings. After nearly a month on the wing, pursuing females and battling other males, this individual is very much on his last legs. Day after day of bright sunshine has faded his fur to a silvery-grey and the ends of his wings are torn and tattered. But despite it all, he still has the most beautiful eyes.

This photograph was taken during a short interlude in a busy day - a morning trip to Waitrose and then a socially-distanced afternoon spent in the garden with the family - as no pubs are open we made our own beer and gin garden! Part of the time was spent doing a Zoom quiz with many of their more distant friends, which caused quite a lot of hilarity. Ben, Alex and Sarah won for the second week in a row - they seem to have a very complimentary set of knowledge. 

Pizzas, antipasti, sun-dried tomato bread and and aubergine Parmigiana gave it a very continental feel - and it was lovely to sit outside chatting until the sun went down, when Chris and Lizzy departed. We're so lucky that they live within easy walking distance, and that our garden is large enough to socialise while maintaining the required 2m spacing!

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