For the last 10 days, I have watched an amazing phenomenon that I have never seen before. Oaks are wind pollinated. Occasionally we see insects visiting, but only casually. However, one bur oak that I keep an eye on has been abuzz with activity. Every day while the male flowers were open, there was a constant movement of bees. I saw several species, but only one was large enough to photograph readily. This large bee, about half the size of a honeybee, was abundant and working hard, with full pollen baskets.
What do you think? Have you ever seen this before? Comment below (Facebook) with your observations
A few other observation: The bees were not working other nearby bur oaks. There were lots of other trees and shrubs nearby with showier flowers but they were not as heavily visited and did not have the same bees.
And now the big question – are these bees robbing pollen, or are they actually pollinating this bur oak?