Living With Pollen

Bumblebee

Bumblebee

We can watch bumblebees enter a series of flowers and fly home with the pollen baskets on its hind legs brimming with pollen. How is pollen collected? Pollen is produced by the anthers of flowers. Upon entering a flower, a bumblebee will use its legs and mandibles to scrape the pollen off the anthers and onto the hairs of its body. It then grooms the hair with its legs and packs the pollen into the basket. If the amount of pollen is not satisfactory, the bee will buzz, rapidly vibrating its body against the anthers of the flowers. The vibrations shake the pollen from the anthers onto the body of the bee. The pollen along with nectar is the primary source of food for the bumblebee brood.

About jjneal

Jonathan Neal is an Associate Professor of Entomology at Purdue University and author of the textbook, Living With Insects (2010). This blog is a forum to communicate about the intersection of insects with people and policy. This is a personal blog. The opinions and materials posted here are those of the author and are in no way connected with those of my employer.
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One Response to Living With Pollen

  1. Pingback: Living With Pollen – Entomo Planet

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