Insects are cold-blooded so their temperature coincides with their environment.
Before the sun rises, they lie ever so still. As the sun warms them, they stir ever so slowly.
At 6 a.m. yesterday, we checked the roses for aphids (yes, they were there)...
Aphid in early morning sun
EARLY MORNING SUN warms an aphid. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
WHERE'S BREAKFAST? A soldier beetle searches for aphids on a rose bush. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
QUICK TURN--A ladybug executes a quick turn on a rose leaf. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
UPSIDE DOWN--A ladybug scoots under a rose leaf. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Except it wasn’t planned.
On the last day of a two-day advanced workshop on "The Technique of Instrumental Insemination,” taught...
Filming the swarm
VETERAN VENTURA beekeeper Bill Weinerth films the bee swarm Thursday, April 23 at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility. He was at the UC Davis facility for an advanced bee insemination course taught by bee breeder-geneticist Susan Cobey. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Swarming in a Tree
BEES SWARM into a tree at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility, UC Davis, as veteran beekeeper Bill Weinerth of Ventura video-tapes the action. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Close-up of bee swarm
CLOSE-UP of bee swarm in a tree at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility, UC Davis. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Smoking the Bees
BEE BREEDER-GENETICIST Susan Cobey calms the swarm by smoking it as beekeeper Bill Weinerth films the activity. Cobey shook the bees loose from the limb and moved them into a new hive. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
They're good soldiers, those soldier beetles.
Members of the family Cantharidae, they are beneficial insects that eat other insects, especially aphids and caterpillars--but just about any soft-bodied insect will do. If no insects are available, you'll...
THREE'S COMPANY--Three soldier beetles search for aphids on a rose bush. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Eating an aphid
EATING AN APHID--A soldier beetle dines on an aphid on a rose leaf. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
AphId in Flight
APHID IN FLIGHT--An aphid flies toward a rose bush, unaware that two predators--soldier beetles--lie in wait. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
ANTENNAE of a soldier beetle. This is a beneficial insect that eats aphids, caterpillars and other soft-bodied insects.(Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Ladybugs eat lots of aphids. Did we say lots of aphids? Lots of aphids. They have no portion control.
If you watch closely, you'll see them gobble aphids like theater-goers devour buttered popcorn. Ladybugs eat so many aphids you wonder if...
Aphid on a ladybug
THE PREDATOR AND THE PREY--An aphid, like a cowboy on a bucking rodeo bull, rides a ladybug. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
It wasn't the Battle of the Sexes.
It was the Battle of the Males.
I spotted two male carpenter bees buzzing loudly over the salvia (sage) in our back yard Saturday morning. Each was lying in wait for a female, but instead found a...
Ol' Blue Eyes
OL' BLUE EYES--This is a male mountain carpenter bee, Xylocopa tabaniformis orpifex Smith, nectaring salvia (sage). Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Ol' Green Eyes
OL' GREEN EYES--This is a male valley carpenter bee (Xylocopa varipuncta), often referred to as a "teddy bear." Males do not sting.(Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)