08 Sep

I was frantically trying to hang my washing out this morning before dashing to our local home ed group, when I spotted a huge bumblebee in the grass.  Stone-cold dead, I’m afraid.  I’d seen it a couple of days ago crawling around the patio in an obvious I’m-about-to-cark-it kinda way.  I decided to scoop it up so no small feet trod on it and got a nasty surprise.  H caught me in the act and wanted to see.  It was dead afterall, it must be interesting!  E was then quickly summoned and she wanted to know where its sting was, what a bumblebee felt like to touch and whether she could keep it forever.  I explained that it probably wouldn’t last long before falling apart.  This inspired more questions…I should think before I speak!  Was their dear, departed rabbit ‘falling apart’ in the ground over there?  They wanted to put the bee in a pot with a lid and take it with them to show everyone.  The only suitable one they could find was the one we usually keep bubble mixture in, with a hole in the lid for a wand.  They decided the hole was small enough that the bee wouldn’t fall out!  I even managed to print off a bumblebee identification sheet before we dashed out the door.  Yes…we were late by this time!  We decided that we had found a Buff-tailed Bumblebee.  And very handsome he is too.  Well I think its a he…I’m not too sure how you ID a queen?!

On arrival, the bee was duly paraded. E had smuggled paper and pens in a bag with her, and she settled down to draw the bee.  She gave up after 3 seconds and I drew the bee.  From the top- with its wings, a stripes, and from the bottom-with its huge eyes, enormously long tongue, and six intriguing legs.  I then had to draw at least 6 more bee outlines for several other children to colour in…you know when you wish you hadn’t started something?!!

I have just loaded our camera with batteries, something I’ve been meaning to do for weeks.  And here is the bee:

I’ve decided I can’t take close-ups with our camera…this was the best of 20!  I think I need to dig up some bumblebee resources this week.

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Posted by on September 8, 2010 in Nature, Uncategorized


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