A recent post on the blog Adventuresinbeeland reminded me of a carpenter bee nest that we dissected in Arizona…two years ago! I could have sworn I already posted about this, but I couldn’t find a record in my blog posts, so here it is now.
This carpenter bee (Now it’s been two years, I’ve forgotten which species of Xylocopa this is!) nests inside the flowering stalks of the century plant (Agave americana). They can get incredibly tall (up to 9 meters or 30 ft).
There’s the entrance to the nest
Cracking open the stalk
Female bee buzzing angrily about us disturbing her
Different stages of development
A closer look at some stages…the pale one is a pupa, metamorphosing from juvenile to adult. Metamorphosis is a fascinatin’ process that I should spend more time gushing about.
A younger pupa (the eyes haven’t turned black yet)
A 3-d printed model of a pupa used for teaching
Big ol fat pollen sausage (larva)