Archive for the 'China' Category



02
Jun
14

Bees and butterflies, oh my!

I am not a morning person. That is, I am not a morning person until I leave the US and head off to another part of the world. In Beijing, I awoke at 6am daily — at least an hour before any alarms were set. This morning, our first in Shenyang, I awoke at 5am, with the sky already fully lit.

I putzed around the room for a while, with 3 and a half hours before any commitments and no internet with which to waste away the time, or make any alternative plans. Eventually, it was 7am and I was fully clothed and ready to explore. I began by walking around the floor of the campus hotel — the 13th floor. (In China, 4 is an unlucky number, and 13 is just the number between 12 and 14.) Shenyang Jian Zhu University is in the suburbs, so there are not a great number of tall buildings around. But, out one window, I could see what looked like some fields with rows planted. So, I wandered downstairs and outside to see what I could see.

Within ten or fifteen feet of the door, I found what I suspect was Apis mellifera, the same honey bee we see at home. It was inspecting some flowers, and then flew up to a willow tree, which it spent quite a long time inspecting. When it flew off, I looked down and saw lots of weedy flowers — many the same as I had seen in Dalian a year ago. And I saw bees! Several different species, one more common than the others, with very large yellow patches on its midlegs.

IMG_5733

So, tomorrow morning, we can begin with some observations right outside of our hotel!

Oh, and I said butterflies, too, didn’t I? Many Pierids are about here, including the cabbage white, Pieris rapae. A few others flitted by, too quickly to be able to identify. Promising start!

-Cheryl

Advertisements