Nest Building Red Leafcutter Bee carries pieces of leaves to the nest, has an encounter with a wasp. Eventually seals nest with small leaves, tightly.
Nest Building Red Leafcutter Bee.
Watching this very busy Red Leafcutter Bee working on her second nest made from small pieces of leaves.
Placed next to the first nest.
Leafcutter Bee Steps to Building a nest.
Rolled to perfection and coming and going with pollen then pressing pollen into the cell section.
The red leafcutter bee came back with this petal from a geranium flower. So fast it wasn’t seen.
Pulling the petals into the leafy nest, to seal of the cell that contains an egg and pollen.
She flies off to obtain a piece of leaf the size of her and brings it back in her little nippers.
She cuts them to her size and they are round.
Enters the nest and layers the leaf on top of the previous one.
Pulling the green leaf inside.
To fold and press neatly over the egg and pollen, then nibbles it and does a good job sealing the cell.
She turned around in the nest and used her legs to press the leaf into place. Note those nippers that cut the leaves.
Takes off from the nest and watchers carefully.Note the first nest that was build next to this one.
Foraging for pollen between building a nest.
Then I find her on the flowers obtaining pollen, for the nest.
Her lower abdomen is full of pollen and then she is off to the nest again.
Bees encounter with a wasp.
Only to find a wasp inspecting her site and the nest.
She buzzes around and threatens the wasp, which is much larger than the bee.
The wasp and the leafcutter bee are face to face, the bee has her nippers out and is very pushy and confronts the wasp all the time.
Not leaving the wasp alone, she flies up and down and they came close to each other.
The bee wins and wasp stands down.
Eventually the wasp and the bee but heads and the wasp moves away.
But returns to look into the nest first.
She doesn’t give up and brings out her nippers ready to fight for her nest. What ever she did made the wasp fly off and leave her alone.
This went on for about 2 to 3 minutes.
Laying an egg and placing pollen.
She then enters her nest and carries on her duties. Of depositing pollen and laying an egg.
Seems to watch me closely as she is photographed, probably laying an egg. Took quit a while.
See those nippers in front that she cuts the pieces of leaves with. Those big eyes on the side of her head.
Legs gripping the leaves outside.
The second Day.
The nest is made quit quickly and on my return the following day I notice the nest has grown more.
Leaf carrying to nest.
The leafcutter bee is carrying a piece of leaf with her nippers and holding it with her hind legs.
Nearing the nest with a piece of leaf.
The bee enters the nest with this new piece of leaf.
She disappears with the leaf she carried to the nest.
Seeing the leafcutter bees nest is near the top, we can peep inside and notice the yellow of maybe pollen.
Final sealing of the nest.
The nest is finished and she seals it with another piece of leaf she cut and brought to the nest.
Its the size of her and holds it tightly between her nippers.
Cleverly pulling it into the cavity of the leaf nest and pressing and sealing it with little nibbles.
Finally closes the nest with its fourth piece of leaf.
Turning around and around, nibbles are heard and the leaf seams to be the exact size needed.
A lot of time is taken to fit and make sure the leaf is sealing of the nest.
Fits perfectly, She seals the final cell off with 4 pieces of leaves.
She couldn’t be found where she was obtaining these pieces from, but was quit quick to return.
Seals the cells off with 2 to 4 pieces of leaves. Building seems to take about 2 days.
This bee was caught resting on a sunflowers petal, with the leaf in her nippers.
The nest is about one and a half inches long.
Please take not of the breeding process and if one sees these types of rolled leaves anywhere, you should know that they are bees nests.
Save the bees as all species are pollinators.