Hand Fed Bees

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John K Veteran Member • Posts: 8,048
Hand Fed Bees

Back in October of 2015 I had been trying, unsuccessfully, for a few weeks to get a shot of a hand fed bumblebee. We had two days of bad weather and the critters ended up being more hungry than afraid. I was baiting them on a flower and after getting them acclimated to me I held my finger close to a bumblebee and it took the bait.

Tech Specs: Canon 70D (F11, 1/125, ISO 200) + a Canon EF-S 60mm macro lens with 25mm of extension (1.7x) + a diffused MT-24EX. This is a single, uncropped, frame taken hand held. I set the shutter and ISO to expose for the natural light in the background.

While walking through my yard looking for something to shoot this Honeybee landed on my shoulder. Not sure why its metabolism tanked, but it was enough for me to coax it onto a finger and photograph it feeding on some sugar syrup.

Tech Specs: Canon 80D (F11, 1/250, ISO 100) + a Canon MP-E 65mm macro lens (almost 3x) + a diffused MT-26EX RT (E-TTL metering with -1/3 FEC). This is a single, uncropped, frame taken hand held. In post I used Topaz Sharpen AI, Denoise AI, and Clarity in that order.

FYI: Bees are actually pretty smart, and it's not unusual for them to figure out that I'm the one with the sugar syrup and they'll start coming directly to me. So if you try this sort of shooting yourself be very careful about how much syrup you use. You don't want to empty out an entire hive. Also do not photograph honeybees like this unless you know for a fact that you are not allergic to their stings. I've been stung four times, and every time I was shooting them on their comb. These days I wear a full bee suit if I'm working around a hive.

That's me on the right taking this shot:

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Also known as Dalantech
My Book: http://nocroppingzone.blogspot.com/2010/01/extreme-macro-art-of-patience.html
My Blog: http://www.extrememacro.com
My gallery: http://www.johnkimbler.com
Macro Tutorials: http://dalantech.deviantart.com/gallery/4122501/Tutorials
Always minimal post processing and no cropping -unless you count the viewfinder...

Canon EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM Canon EOS 70D Canon EOS 80D Canon MP-E 65mm f/2.5 1-5x Macro
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