The honeybees are back from their seasonal job on the West Coast where they pollinated almonds trees in the sunshine (while we shivered in our wool and fleece here). Since spring has been rather uncongenial to flower growth—this morning was a measly 23°—most of the pollen harvest is focused on dandelions.
Notice the little orange saddlebags on my tiny yellow-and-black friend. A Google search informed me that they’re actually “pollen baskets”, or corbiculae. It seems that while in flight, bees use their tongues and combs on their legs to brush the pollen off of their bodies and pack it into the depressions on their hind legs. Tiny hairs help hold the pollen in place.
“Then He said to them, “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” –LUKE 10:2 (NKJV)