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|The genera Hoplitis, Hoplosmia and Osmia are called mason bees. Mason bees are loners (solitary bees) and belong to the family Megachilidae. Approximately 50 different species are found in Central Europe. These include Osmia bicornis and Osmia cornuta.
Mason bees build their nests in walls, cracks in stone, , (sandy) soil, hollow plants, dead wood from trees or in the galleries of wood-boring insects. The females build individual brood chambers inside the nest using glandular secretions and leaf pieces. )...|
... the future larvae before they start laying eggs. After oviposition the brood cell is closed with a seal. The hatched larvae feed on their food stock for some weeks before they pupate.
Some species overwinter as larvae, others as adult mason bees. The latter are already active in March. The natural enemies of mason bees include the larvae of cuckoo beeswho feed on the eggs of the mason bees and their food stores.
|Bees are vegetarians, mainly living on sweet plant juice. Pollen serves as their supply of protein. Some bees live in colonies. Most of the bees are solitary. Sometimes solitary bees live in small commons. The small commons primarily enable the solitary bees to rear their offspring together and temporarily to protect themselves. Even sleeping, hibernation and guards groups are formed. Bees which live in colonies however, are non–transient, socially sophisticated and almost perfectly organised.
For humans primarily the honey bee is of interest. There are 9 different species : Apis dorsata laboriosa, Dwarf honey bee (Apis florea), G...|
|The term "bee" (Apiformes) is used for several families in the order Hymenoptera. When people speak of ‘bees’ they tend to mean honey bees and yet it is estimated that bee species number approximately 20, 000 in total, 700 of which can be found in Europe. In Germany there are about 500 species of bees. The oldest bee fossils date back to 80 million years ago. |
|...with a puree of pollen and nectar, on which they lay their eggs ,in a small puddle of nectar. The hatched larvae feed on the puree until early autumn, thereafter they pupate within the brood chamber. They overwinter as pupae and hatch as adult bees in March. Among the parasites who feed on the brood of Anthophora and Amegilla is the oil beetle Sitaris muralis. In march, the female Sitaris muralis beetles place an egg on the fur of hatched male Anthophora and Amegilla.
During mating the e...|
...e brood of Anthophora and Amegilla is the oil beetle Sitaris muralis. In march, the female Sitaris muralis beetles place an egg on the fur of hatched male Anthophora and Amegilla.
During mating the eggs are transferred to the fur of the female bees and are thus transported unnoticed into the bees’ nests. The hatched larvae of the oil beetle feed on the food stores and on the brood of the Anthophora and Amegilla bees.
|Western honey bee|
|The Western honey bee (Apis mellifera) was formerly known as the European honey bee. It belongs to the genus of honey bees, which is thought to have existed for the last 100 million years. . It was previously only widespread in Europe, Africa and Asia. Because of its importance to apiculture, the honey bee was brought to other continents in the course of colonisation...|
...the last 100 million years. . It was previously only widespread in Europe, Africa and Asia. Because of its importance to apiculture, the honey bee was brought to other continents in the course of colonisation. In Asia there are 8 other species of bees, of which the Eastern honey bee (Apis cerana) is the most well known. Honey bees are divided into 25 sub-species. One of these is the European dark bee, which was originally only native north of the Alps.
|The legs of honey bees are segmented, the hind legs play an important role in pollen collection. The first sector of the hind legs is greatly widened. On the inner side of this, is a thick line of hair which the bee uses to brush off pollen remains. Pollen is transported ...|
...atly widened. On the inner side of this, is a thick line of hair which the bee uses to brush off pollen remains. Pollen is transported to the hive in "baskets" made out of an arrangement of hairs, also located on the hind legs. Like all bees, the honey bee has mouth parts, which can lap up sweet plant secretions (nectar and honeydew). Nectar is transported in part of the stomach called the "honey stomach". Other bees on the same level in the hive are supplied with nectar by this bee.
|Honey bees are considered the most important pollinators of about 80 percent of the flowers in the temperate zones. They fall into the category of livestock because of their production of honey and wax. After removal of these products from the hive, beekeepe...|
... the most important pollinators of about 80 percent of the flowers in the temperate zones. They fall into the category of livestock because of their production of honey and wax. After removal of these products from the hive, beekeepers provide the bees with substitutes (sugar water), so the bees can survive the winter well.
|Genera Anthophora and Amegilla|
|The genera Anthophora and Amegilla form a new genus in the family bees (Apidae), the order Hymenoptera , the superfamily Apoidea and the subfamily Anthophorinae. The German name for this new genus is “Pelzbienen” and could be translated as “fur bees”. Anthophora and Amegilla are found throughout the world and they are widespread in Central Europe where approximately 20 species can be found. Some species of the genus Anthophora are: Anthophora aestivalis, Anthophora bimaculata, Anthophora bore...|
...itarsis, Anthophora furcata, Anthophora plagiata, Anthophora plumipes, Anthophora pubescens, Anthophora quadrimaculata and Anthophora retusa. The genus Amegilla includes the species Amegilla quadrifasciata. In Germany there are 13 species of “fur” bees. The most common is the flower bee (Anthophora plumipes).
|Anthophora and Amegilla are solitary bees which don’t build colonies. These bees can reach body lengths of 8-16 mm. Their bodies are compact, stocky and densely hairy and they resemble bumble bees. They have strikingly large compound eyes and simple eyes fixed to a ‘plinth’ between their antennae. .. Their upper jaws look like clamps. Their probosces are covered with bristles and allow them to collect pollen from long, narrow flowers. Their...|
|Hylaeus are a genus in the family plasterer bees (Colletidae) within the order Hymenoptera, the suborder Apocrita, the infraorder Aculeata, the superfamily Apoidea and the subfamily Hylaeineae. This genus has numerous species worldwide. In Central Europe around 45 species are common, and in Ge...|
...or this marking can be completely absent. The markings on the face vary from species to species, and this therefore allows accurate identification. Many species have bright spots on the chest and legs. Since their bodies are hairless, these bees cannot carry pollen externally. Hylaeus carry pollen in a crop (a pouch in the foregut).
Hylaeus prefer to live on forest edges, in parks and gardens, hedgerows,sand pits and clay pits. The adult bees are active from May to September. They feed on the nectar and pollen of various plants such as aster, daisy or sunflower (Asteraceae), bell flowers (Campanulaceae), legumes, peas, beans or pulses (Fabaceae), mint plants (Lamiaceae), dicots (Resed...
|honey species (2)|