Scaled image p34.jpg

Lobivia pentlandii     6/14/20
One of the neat things about looking at flowers is the look one gets at the resident bees. I forgot the species, but this bee likes to dive into any cactus flower and cover itself with pollen. It then lies in the flower for minutes, apparently catatonic. I've brushed the things with a paintbrush without any movement on their part. They lie there, in the flower, catatonic. Incidentally, I refuse to feel sorry for the beekeepers losing their bees. The European honeybee is as much an invader of the world as are its European masters. It's been kept, inbreeding like crazy, for at least 2000 years, and longer, I think. Yes, the almond growers of California are nervous. And they should be. If the almond crop depends on that one bee to properly make a crop, it's crazy. That is a much too specialized system. There are about 1000 different species of bees in New Mexico, and, I think, about 4000 species in North America. If all the honeybees die, there will be plenty of bees of other species ready to take over the various ecological niches now occupied by massive numbers of honeybees. No doubt a lot of these species were devastated by the introduction of the competing honeybee by the European invaders of The New World.   (34/72)   

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