Amusing Observations.
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    South Waikato New Zealand
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    212

    Default Amusing Observations.

    Nature has a funny side.

    The other day, I saw something really odd... and funny.

    There was a wasp on a dandelion flower, I was trying to decide if I should squish it when a honey bee flew onto the flower right beneath the stinger of the wasp and started working the flower too, going right underneath the wasp.
    The wasp lifted its left legs up and over it and moved off to the other side of the flower, then, when the honey bee had its back to it, walked up to it, put both antennae on the bees back and then stepped back.
    When the bee turned around to face the wasp, the wasp stepped up and head butted the bee in the face twice,knocking it completely off ITS flower and then continued to work ITS flower as if nothing had happened.

    Here in New Zealand, we are in early spring.
    I think this does have some bearing on this behaviour as it is completely different to what I have observed at other times of the year.
    For now, the wasps are only interested in collecting nectar.

    What the bee did then was interesting as well.
    Instead of going onto another dandelion flower, it flew over to the brassicas and started foraging on them instead.

    I found this interesting because everything I have read has said that honey bees ONLY forage on one type of flower at a time....Obviously, this is not always the case.

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  3. #2

    Default Re: Amusing Observations.

    IMO there are bees using the one type of flowers at a time and those which forage for diversity of pollen and nectar.
    I sometimes wonder why I see single bees working wild flowers while the others visit my planted flow fields right beside.
    If available I believe this varieties of food can be a factor to health, mostly the different pollen stores.

    In the picts you see the Hibiscus and Stonecrop in my garden. The bee on the stonecrop worked the hibiscus before ( the bee on the hibiscus is not the same bee, I wanted to show how the hibiscus pollen looks)
    Do the pollen bees go for nectar to boost energy or did that bee try the hibiscus nectar getting herself covered with pollen and then decided for stonecrop? May be because hibiscus nectar is hard to get for bees, they have to bite themselves to the bottom of the flower.

    Third pict is my AMM bringing a variety of pollen.

    PB.jpg NB.jpg DPB.jpg
    Last edited by 1102009; 09-23-2018 at 10:19 PM. Reason: picts added

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    South Waikato New Zealand
    Posts
    212

    Default Re: Amusing Observations.

    I have decided to (try to) let go of any and all preconceived ideas, including those to do with bees, because there seems to be alot of observable oddities.
    I did wonder if she was collecting nectar from the dandelion and pollen from the brassica, but when she did finally fly off, she didnt have ANY pollen in her baskets.
    That first bee is REALLY Black!
    Some of mine look similar to the third pic, but not all.
    Nature is amazing.

  5. #4

    Default Re: Amusing Observations.

    The older, the darker they look, loosing the hairs

    Yes, I rely much on my own observations. Though I like to study research Iīm always a sceptic and compare with my own observations.

    What you tell above: there are insect communities on flowers often, seems they have not much problems with cooperating if nectar is abundant.
    Not when itīs about the stores and the broodnest territory though. Bees only tolerate some insects there. It would be interesting to find out which ones, and why.

    I did wonder if she was collecting nectar from the dandelion and pollen from the brassica, but when she did finally fly off, she didnt have ANY pollen in her baskets.
    Who knows, perhaps it was a scout bee examining the situation.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    South Waikato New Zealand
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    212

    Default Re: Amusing Observations.

    Here are two that my hive have tolerated over the last two winters....slugs and native cockcroaches.
    I have no idea why

  7. #6

    Default Re: Amusing Observations.

    Slugs!!! Haha! Nice! They are not inside the hive I believe, but around?

    Mine tolerate :

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earwig

    In the climate lid they live and they run around on the varroa board ( hope they do not take mites away from my counting, but can be).

    Ants they tolerate too, I have anthills under every hive, but both insects they do not give access into the inside of the box walls..

    Spiders live under the lid too, spinning themselves into cocoons for overwintering.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    South Waikato New Zealand
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    212

    Default Re: Amusing Observations.

    No, the slugs lived in the hive over winter.
    In the first winter, I thought they had arrived with the fern leaves I stuffed into the frame feeder to stop the bees from drowning.
    They were very big fat slugs which I removed before I got my AFB check done. I didnt want anyone else to see them in there. (now, I dont care).

    This winter, I realized that I again had slugs, much smaller and thinner ones this year. They did Not come in with the fern leaves because I thoroughly checked them before I put them in the feeder.

    I observed them through the window both winters and could see that the bees didnt care about them, so I didnt worry and hoped that they were contributing to the microflora/fauna inside the hive.

    Friday afternoon was the day the last slug left the hive. I noticed it as it was crawling down the outside of the robber screen and dropped into the plants beneath the hive.
    I dont mind the slugs, but cockcroaches make my skin crawl, I just do not like them at all...and they are still in there, but again, the bees dont seem to care, so I am leaving them.

  9. #8

    Default Re: Amusing Observations.

    mmh!?

    Makes me wonder about your hive climate, on the bottom itīs cold and more humid though and the slugs eat the moldy things or maybe waxmoths, or do they sleep?
    Did they breed in the debris?
    If I see them, they move about the outside walls and sometimes look into the entrance. The bees ignore them but they never went in, they do not like the bees traffic tickling them.
    In winter I donīt see any but that does not mean they are not present in the time of no-checking.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    South Waikato New Zealand
    Posts
    212

    Default Re: Amusing Observations.

    I have no idea what they do in there over winter,cant see what they would find to eat either.

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