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Photo Information
Copyright: Riaan van der Merwe (mrvdm1) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 97 W: 14 N: 93] (301)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2005-08-08
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon 350D / Digital Rebel XT, Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 Super Macro II
Exposure: f/14.0, 1/160 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2005-08-11 3:45
Viewed: 4468
Points: 5
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This bee was looking for water on fountain when I took this photo. Using my new camera, this really got exciting

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Uniramia
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Suborder: Apocrita
Family: Apidae
Subfamily: Apinae
Genus: Apis
Species: Apis mellifera

Physical Characteristics
Apis mellifera have compound eyes for seeing flowers. Bees are insensitive to the color red, but detect ultraviolet colors. Their antennae are used for detecting the fragrance of the flower. Their legs, used for gathering pollen, have a crop for transporting nectar, and a stinger for defense of the hive.
Bee communication
Bees communicate by means of movement. For example, when bees return to an area where there were many flowers, they will perform a dance on the honeycomb. Movements and vibration frequencies show the bees the direction and distance of the floral area.
Food and Feeding
Food for bees are honey and pollen. Bees collect the nectar from flowers in their crop, which is connected to the gut. The bees' legs are designed to comb pollen from the body. The workers use the collected pollen and add honey to create a mixture called "bee bread", which is the food for bees.

Conservation Issues
Pollinator decline has been reported on every continent except Antarctica, and while it is argued that the introduction of the Apis mellifera has disrupted native pollination systems through competition, the honeybee, as a pollinator, has not gone unaffected (Ecological Society of America, date unknown). The wild populations, and even some managed populations, of Apis mellifera are on the decline due to the same issues that native insect pollinators face (Ecological Society of America, date unknown). These issues include: habitat loss, the presence and use of pesticides, and the introduction of exotic parasites- all either the direct or indirect result of human activity (Ginsberg, date unknown).

Habitat loss
The destruction of natural habitats greatly affects bee communities, leading to a decline in wild Apis mellifera populations. Bees require "large, continuously connected areas of suitable habitat," however, human cultivation and urbanization often fragment these habitats into small islands (Delaplane, date unknown)(Ginsberg, date unknown). The relative small area enclosed within these islands, in comparison to the increased area of exposure to the surrounding environment, increases the chance of inbreeding and the invasion by competitors, parasites, and predators (Delaplane, date unknown)(Ginsberg, date unknown). At the same time small habitats decrease Apis mellifera’s dispersal ability and the number of nesting areas and food resources available (Delaplane, date unknown) (Ecological Society of America, date unknown).

Information thanks to http://www.earlham.edu/~harrico/apismellifera.htm

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To ellis49: Zoom zoommrvdm1 1 08-12 02:01
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Needs Improvement 
  • gpepp Silver Note Writer [C: 8 W: 0 N: 26] (97)
  • [2005-08-11 5:34]

The composition is good, but photo is a bit soft, the bee is out of focus (maybe this the problem of the autofocus). Well done!

It uses the manual way, to get focus better. It uses more depth of field.

  • Great 
  • Luc Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1835 W: 301 N: 4287] (14767)
  • [2005-08-11 7:59]

Sorry Riian, I have no time to write a decent comment. I give to you the well deserved smily.
Day thought: Who is God, otherwise an eternal Child playing an eternal Game in an eternal Garden. (Sri Aurobindo)
Thank you for sharing pictures and notes and for the enjoyment which they give to me.

Nice macro, Riaan.
Well composed and good POV. And a very good note too.
It's OOF and I think you shoot this handheld at 300mm, it's very difficult to hold steady with a long zoom at 1/160 sec especially in macro mode,
you had room for a longer shutterspeed or you could use a tripod. A rule of tumb, use the ShutterSpeed as long as you lens. 1/300 for 300mm but I will say you need 1/500 Sec.


Nice shot. The bee looks pretty cool.

If I have to be picky then the stone of the sculpture is slightly over exposed and a bit distracting. This could be fixed with some post processing. Hence it is still a good shot.

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