I stopped at Richardson Nature Center the other day to see if the feeders had any activity worth some digiscoping--some wild turkeys were there, about three toms. The above dude made me chuckle. His body was in the sun and his head was in the shade.
Periodically, you would see him pant, meaning he was hot. Birds do not sweat they way we do. To expel excess heat, they pant. I wondered if it occurred to this turkey to put its whole body into the shade, rather than just the head? But then again, that is a small brain controlling a large body.
It's feathers gleaming rust in the sun were quite beautiful.
The neck was another story. Ew.
While watching the turkeys, I noticed quite a few bugs flying around. At first, I thought the bugs were either box elder bugs or some type of wasp creating a hive on the side of the nature center. Then I noticed the dull hum--honeybees!
Richardson has a couple of beehives near their bird feeders. It looked as though someone had extracted some honey from some frames and left them out for the bees to "clean up." The frames were right next to the window, so I had a chance to watch the bee activity without being hindered by a veil.
There were a few other species coming in to take advantage of the unprotected honey. While I was watching the intense activity, I noticed several "balls of bees" start to roll around. At first, I thought they were fighting, but noticed that no one was using a stinger and that the were all licking each other. I think what was happening as that the forager bees would go into get some honey and get covered in honey themselves. Other bees would sense the honey on them and come in to lick it off. The bee would try to fly away, but another bee would have her tongue stuck to her leg from trying to lick off all the honey. I got a video of a bunch of girls, covered in honey,...and...licking each other:
and here's another: