The Way I See Things



I must be honest - when I first saw him, I thought he was dead. If you check out my second photo, you'll probably see why: even for a bee, this is an absurd sleeping position, especially as he appears to have his tongue extended along the honeysuckle stem. And sadly, we have reached the point in the season at which the number of male plumpies is obviously falling, and there are now fewer of them to be found than the still busily working females.

But after I'd watched him for a few seconds, and recorded him for posterity, I first saw one of his antennae twitch, and then his abdomen began to expand and contract quite deeply. A few seconds after that he began to move, laboriously got all six legs underneath him, stood up, turned round, and then crashed back down again. This, I thought, was definitely it, and rather than cause him unnecessary stress I went off to photograph other things, leaving him in peace. While I was photographing the other things though, the sun came out, and when I checked the honeysuckle again, the hairy-footed flower bee was gone. Old and tired, then, but not quite ready to give up yet.


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