Our garden beehives have been growing quickly. The afternoon’s orientation flights- where young bees try out their wings and learn to recognize landmarks around the hive- were especially busy so I pulled out my video gear:
What am I doing this summer?
Good question. I’m teaching Integrative Biology 496: Introduction to Beekeeping.
If you are a University of Illinois student and would like to learn about the biology of Apis mellifera and how to manage a small apiary for honey or just for fun, please consider this 8-week class. Enrollment is capped at 22 in order to maintain a reasonable student to hive ratio.
The class website is here.
This photo was ultimately rejected for a journal cover (it was the wrong shape!) but I shot it to accompany a research article that used museum specimens of midwestern bumblebees to compare current levels of genetic diversity with previous decades. Since this image won’t appear in print anytime soon, I thought I’d share it here instead.
photo details: Canon 35mm f2.0 prime lens on a Canon EOS 20D
ISO 200, 1/125 sec, f/5, indirect strobe
Spring is swarm season for honeybees, and the feral population in Tucson is booming. We’ve got not one but two new colonies nesting in dead trees in our yard. I didn’t do anything to attract them, they just moved in on their own.
My feelings about honey bees are mixed. (more…)
details: Canon 100mm macro lens on a Canon 20D
bees on plain white paper
f/14, 1/250 sec, ISO 100
Canon 550EX speedlite flash, bounced off white paper
levels adjusted in Photoshop