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Close-ups show the incredibly diverse properties of individual bees

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#bees
#insects
# portraits

All images © Josh Forwood, shared with permission

Although busy hives full of honey bees tend to dominate mainstream images and conversations about bee populations, 90 percent the insects are actually solitary animals who prefer to live outside of a colony. This majority, made up of tens of thousands of species, are also superior pollinators compared to their social counterparts because they are polylectic; H. they collect the sticky substance from multiple sources, which makes them even more important for the preservation of crops and biodiversity.

“While the overall number of bees is increasing, this is almost entirely due to the increase in beekeeping, especially honey bees,” said wildlife photographer Josh Forwood says colossal. “Due to the artificially increased populations in concentrated areas, honey bees are becoming too much of a competition for many solitary bee species. In turn, this leads to an almost monoculture of bees in some areas, which has an enormous impact on the surrounding ecosystem. “

There are 250 loners in the UK alone, some of whom Forwood has photographed in a series of portraits that show how unique each individual is. To capture the creatures up close, he built a beehive out of wood and bamboo while tied to his home in Bristol during the quarantine. Forwood frequently travels the globe to see the wildlife for clients such as Netflix, Disney, BBC, and National Geographic. to document PBS.

After about a month the hotel was busy, causing Forwood to attach a camera to the end of the long tubes and take pictures of the creatures as they crawled inside. The resulting portraits show how incredibly unique each insect is, with very different body shapes, colors, eye shapes and hair patterns. Each bee has an almost identical pose, and their facial features are dramatically framed in a ring of natural light for comparison, showing how each insect really has its own identity. Since the images only capture them from the front, Forwood says it is difficult to estimate how many different species have visited the structure, as most are identified by the shape and color of their bodies.

If you’re interested in starting your own bee hotel, stop by Forwood’s tutorial details his process. You can also follow his wildlife photography on Twitter and Instagram. (above PetaPixel)

#bees
#insects
# portraits

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