My first attempts this year at shooting this species of Mason Bee (Osmia latreillei). I've set the images up as hyperlinks that will take you to my Deviant Art site when you click on them, and if you click on the images at my Deviant Art site they will expand to 1600 pixels wide.
I was about a meter away from the female when the male tackled her. I had been watching him chase off other males from a group of dandelions that he had staked out as his territory and got lucky when the female landed on one of his flowers. Tech specs: Canon 40D (F13, 1/250, ISO 100) + a Canon MPE-65mm macro lens (@1x) + a diffused MT-24EX (-1 FEC).
I put down a little honey hoping that one of the males would start feeding on it. It doesn't always work, but when it does I can usually get a few frames. Tech specs: Canon 40D (F13, 1/250, ISO 100) + a Canon MPE-65mm macro lens (@2.5x) + a diffused MT-24EX (-1 FEC).
This shot at five times life size has been stuck in my head for a while so I went out early in the morning (around 7:30) to look for a bee that was still trying to get its metabolism going. Mason bees will typically start foraging when the temperature is as low as 14C, but they need the heat from the sun to help keep them moving. Fortunately I got a break and the skies were partly cloudy -when the sun went behind a cloud it was like flicking a switch and he stopped moving. Tech specs: Canon 40D (F10, 1/250, ISO 100) + a Canon MPE-65mm macro lens (@5x) + a diffused MT-24EX (-1 FEC).
All images taken hand held and with no focus stacking.