Jonathan & Denise >
The photo came first, and only then did we realize the subject linked neatly with the last previous post, Meet the Emperor. No, really!
There are no honey bees in Uist, so pollination is by other flying insects, often just flies. Bumble bees too : they nest and indeed hibernate in the gaps of the high stone walls of our garden, which is a very short journey to work for them, pollinating our apple trees and soft fruit bushes. Here, it’s a worker* Buff-tailed Bumble Bee (or worker* White-tailed Bumble Bee – the species is named after the colouring of the Queens, the workers of both species having white tails). The garden also has many resident Great Yellow Bumble Bees – which are rare, nationally : we saw several working on the quince flowers, but getting near enough to photograph them and they fly off. The white/buff-tailed bees are not so shy!
* That’s right, the photo shows a worker, not a queen … but we couldn’t let that stand in the way of a bit of fun with the post titles!