Bumblebee

Bee.png
Bees and other flying insects are vital plant pollinators. 

We rely on these pollinators to produce edible crops and fruit in orchards such as the one here.  In return, pollinating insects collect nectar and pollen from flowers to feed themselves and their young.  In spring, orchard blossom provides bees with a good source of nectar for honey and wax production. If it wasn't for bees and other pollinating insects, much of the blossom on our fruit trees would wither and drop, and no fruit would be produced.

Honeybees are domesticated and kept in hives that are moved near to fruit trees and other crops by bee-keepers.  But there are also hundreds of types of wild bees, including bumblebees, and other insects that pollinate flowers, including food crops.  They all rely on a sequence of flowers to keep them alive, some of which they can find in gardens, but many others are found in old meadows and hedgerows.

Some species of bees live in colonies, each with just one queen and many workers that collect nectar and pollen from flowers.  Pollen from the stamens – the male part of the flower – sticks to hairs on the worker bees.  When they visit the next flower, some of this pollen is rubbed off onto the stigma – the female part of the flower – and fertilises the flower so that a fruit with seeds can develop.