Thirsty Bugs

15 Jul
A thirsty honeybee (Apis mellifera) struggles after falling into the water.

A thirsty honeybee struggles after falling into the water.

It’s been a hot, exceedingly dry summer here.  In the African savannah, wildlife congregate at watering holes.  Here in Texas cattle land we have watering troughs.  These oases in the desert are not only attractive to the larger lifeforms, but their smaller six-legged compatriots as well.

During a very dry visit to the gorgeous Elephant Mountain Wildlife Management Area for EntoBlitz, the effects of the drought could be observed in the multitudes of thirsty honeybees seen clustering along the interior lip of a water tank.  Like the African watering hole, the tank wasn’t without its dangers:  as in the case of the unlucky bee above, who lost her footing and became ensnared by wet wings and clinging surface tension.

Honeybees drink water while one falls in.

Thirsty bees cling to the interior lip of a water tank during a drought (Elephant Mountain Wildlife Management Area, Texas).

Many thanks to Paul Lenhart for the pictures!  (And surprise to Drew, who didn’t know I was going to stick this picture on my blog.  Hi, Drew!)

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One Response to “Thirsty Bugs”

  1. jtrager July 18, 2011 at 3:17 pm #

    Speaking of Hymenoptera in cattle tanks, I did some nice collecting of alate ants from a couple of tanks like that on the outskirts of Barcelona (Spain) a few years ago.

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