Bombus fraternus, m, back, Charleston Co., SC
Check the eyes out on this male Bumble Bee. We already put up a spread of female B. fraternus, but the male has some pretty unique features for bumble bees. For one, the eyes are HUGE, they nearly meet at the top of the head. Only a few other bumbles do that...and the face is extremely short, with the mandibles almost joined to the bottom of the eyes. So, the general speculation (royally on my part that is) is that larger eyes means a more visual approach to life. Life for all male bees is about founding as many babies as possible the next generation. So likely this male is doing a lot of scanning and scouting for receptive queens from a perch or at a distance the better to get first access Is that true? Not sure, but its the best I can come up with. Captured by Mimi Jenkins in the fields of Watermelons of Charleston, SC and you can thank a bumble bee at your next picnic. Illuminated in the beer cooler modeling studios of the USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab by none other than.... Anders Croft. Photography Information: Canon Mark II 5D, Zerene Stacker, Stackshot Sled, 65mm Canon MP-E 1-5X macro lens, Twin Macro Flash in Styrofoam Cooler, F5.0, ISO 100, Shutter Speed 200. USGSBIML Photoshopping Technique: Note that we now have added using the burn tool at 50% opacity set to shadows to clean up the halos that bleed into the black background from "hot" color sections of the picture.