View Full Version : Bee rubbing - by Small Green Bee-Eater

27-07-2009, 09:30 AM
Insects form a major part of Bee-Eater's diet. Since many of these preys are poisonous, bee-eaters undertake a complicated process to assure poison is removed before eating. After taking caught prey back to the perch, bee-eaters toss it into the air, catching it with its bill tip. They strike it several times against the perch. In an action called bee-rubbing, bee-eaters grab the insect's tail tip, quickly rubbing the body against the perch to squeeze out the bee's fluid. They gradually grab the insect around its abdomen in order to expel leftover venom, eventually tearing out the stinger and poison glands. The food is then safely swallowed whole.

EXIF : Aperture Priority, ISO-200, f/5.6, 1/250, 2-stops Over expose (for silhouette)
Gear : Canon40D, Canon Telephoto Lens

Sabyasachi Patra
27-07-2009, 10:29 AM
A nice description of the behaviour.

Lovely image. The background is nicely diffused. The beak appears sharp as the bee eater has already opened its mouth to the full extent and waiting. A moment earlier, and the shot may not be as sharp. We can see that the bee that is flung in the air is not sharp as it is moving.

What is the white dot? Dust spot? Which lens was used for this image?

Thanks for sharing.


27-07-2009, 10:56 AM
Thanks for your kind words..... Not too sure about that white spot. They don't appear on my other images. just left the entire thing uncloned....

Mrudul Godbole
27-07-2009, 11:40 AM
Lovely action captured. Sharp.Nice perch and BG. Ideally would have liked the small twig in the right not to be there. The wings of the insect are giving an interesting look.
Thanks for explaining the process.

Perfectly taken. Look forward to more.

Bibhav Behera
27-07-2009, 12:01 PM
Lovely image... perfectly frozen... :)

Kiran Ghadge
28-07-2009, 03:30 PM
perfectly timed.. fantastic image

AB Apana
28-07-2009, 05:59 PM
Hi Subbu, a very nice image, not a good day for the bee, though. I assume this is with the 500?


29-07-2009, 10:38 PM
Yes Apana, this was with 500

Sagar Patil
31-07-2009, 12:31 AM
Wow... this is amazing shot. Predator and prey, both are in 180 degrees.

Looks nice to see that these birds have no fight for prey, like in mammals :)