Thursday 16 July 2009

Mating bumblebees

This morning, just before 9:00 we saw a pair of mating Bombus terrestris on the pavement. At first I thought they had been squished, or rather, that the female had been, as she was lying a bit sideways and was motionless, while the male seemed actively thrusting. I got a stick to move them out of the way (I saw a pair of Bombus lapidarius squished on the pavement last week!) and the female then revived and started jumping trying to fly, possibly warming up. She did a few jumps with the male on tow. I thought they were going to end up on the road. Just then, she took off and flew high, straight over the trees at the other side of the street. A truly impressive sight! I felt very lucky to have witnessed the event, and even luckier to have been able to take a few shots.

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