Carpenter Bee, Puducherry, India by Amit Roy

The image shows the frontal view of a male Carpenter bee. It shows a common subject in an unusual stance. I visited Puducherry last year for 3 weeks in 2019 to document arthropods in the coastal ecosystem. I found this bee just outside the campus where we were stationed on the outskirts of the city. I found the Carpenter bee sitting on the ground. It was at rest, not moving. I positioned myself on the ground at a distance and started documenting it. The bee then started crawling towards me and climbed a small twig lying on the ground on the way. As it was climbing the twig, I moved a bit closer, and recorded this image.
Bees have been declared as the “most important living beings on earth”. They pollinate and facilitate close to 250,000 species of flowering plants. They provide honey and also pollinate food crops worth millions of dollars. Sadly, bee populations are declining sharply across the world as a result of human activities such as pesticide use, deforestation, industrialization and urbanization. Many species are on the brink of extinction.

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