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Blue Banded Bee and Neon Cuckoo Bee – Original Painting


Helen Ansell Original Painting

Acrylic on canvas, 50 x 50cm.

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A Message From The Artist

“One of the things I love about the work I do is discovering new things about our amazing Australian Flora and Fauna. When I first had the idea to paint Australian Native Bees I had no idea there were 2000 varieties of them – 800 of which are found in WA and contrary to popular belief only less than 2% of them are stingless. They are responsible for pollinating a lot of our crops including tomatoes which is why I chose to paint a native tomato bush here – (Solanum lasiophyllum). Blue Banded Bees (Amegilla) are solitary bees which means that each female bee mates and then builds a solitary nest by herself. The Neon Cuckoo Bee, (Thyreus nitidulus) with glittering metallic blue spots, lays its eggs in the nests of Blue Banded Bees.” Helen Ansell

About “Blue Banded Bee and Neon Cuckoo Bee”

The Blue Banded Bee (Amegilla) is about 11 mm long, and is a solitary insect. It can perform a special type of pollination called ‘buzz pollination’, which is important for quite a few of our native Australian flowers, including native tomatoes, which have their pollen hidden inside tiny capsules.

The Neon Cuckoo Bee (Thyreus nitidulus) lays its eggs along with those of the Blue Banded Bee. If the baby neon cuckoo bee hatches earlier than the blue-banded bee baby, it will get all the pollen left for those other bees and get a great start to life, while the others starve to death.

They are shown on a Flannel Bush (Solamum lasiophyllum), one of Australia’s native tomatoes.

Helen Ansell Original Fine Art Paintings are in popular demand and we receive regular enquiries about new original artwork.

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You may also be interested in a larger Helen Ansell Original Painting – “Rather Splendid” which features a group of Australian Splendid Fairy Wrens in all their glory!