A bee was working the passion flowers in my front yard a few days ago. Looking at the pictures, it is easy to see how the anthers (with the yellow edges) are designed to deposit pollen on the back of the bee while it is busy collecting nectar. I think this honey bee is a bit small to get thoroughly coated coated with pollen. If you try breaking open a flower, you can find a circular tunnel filled with nectar. Passion flowers have copious nectar hidden away. No wonder this bee stuck around letting me take several photos.
As an undergraduate at UC Berkeley, I studied Conservation of Natural Resources. I took a couple of entomology classes and became very interested in insects. After I graduated, I held several jobs working with bugs: in the fields of central California, the forests of Connecticut and Idaho, and the labs of Berkeley. Then I went to grad school and studied entomology at UC Riverside and UC Berkeley (back in the olden days when UCB had an entomology department). When my kids were little, I wanted to share my love of insects with them, so I started a butterfly garden before butterfly gardens were popular. Then of course, their teachers asked me to bring caterpillars into the classroom and I started doing classroom presentations. I do presentations in elementary schools, provide teacher trainings, teach adult school classes, and bring live insect specimens to garden fairs. My book is perfect for helping elementary school kids learn about butterflies.