Sweat bees, syrphid flies, drought, and humidity

All in a summer’s field work! This field season has been very rough because of epic drought coupled with record heat and humidity, which led to plagues of sweat bees (especially the tiny subgenus Dialictus) and hordes of syrphid flies of nightmare proportions, all of which adore sweaty, sweaty field biologists. I’ve never been particularly […]


This is a cleptoparasitic bee in the genus Triepeolus…I found her sitting on a pollen bag early one morning. It was a cool, wet morning, and I think she was just trying to dry off. But she was posed so beautifully… These bees have white “appressed” hairs rather than pigments in their cuticle. I think […]

(More) Simple bee, bird, and flower drawings

My post on simple bee and flower drawings is one of my most visited (and the images are the most downloaded), so here are some more line drawings! I actually drew these for a figure for a grant, but you are welcome to download and use them if you like. Bumblebee (Bombus)       […]

Links to share

Colors in nature! http://www.bbc.com/news/in-pictures-36674573 Why do sunflowers turn with the sun? http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/08/05/488891151/the-mystery-of-why-sunflowers-turn-to-follow-the-sun-solved I’ve always thought this about fax machines: http://www.theonion.com/article/report-fax-machines-still-pretty-impressive-if-you-21256 Yes! Let’s make observing insects fun for everyone! Why not? 🙂 http://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2016/08/06/488830352/the-app-that-aims-to-gamify-biology-has-amateurs-discovering-new-speciesf Mound building spiders?! Yes, please: http://www.jhnewsandguide.com/news/environmental/disassembling-the-mason-spider-s-mound/article_3a6d7d98-4ff3-59f0-91ad-4f2516da929b.html Yay kakapos! http://www.earthtouchnews.com/conservation/success-stories/baby-boom-for-one-of-the-worlds-rarest-parrots How caddisflies build their cases: Sparkly butt spiders! (again no blue pigment, just structural […]