See the West’s overlooked pollinators — like never before

As native bees sink in the shadow of honeybees, one artist creates a vivid showcase.

  • A male Diadasia rinconis collected by Don Harvey in Tucson, Arizona. Diadasia rinconis pollinate cacti and cluster their nests into colonies.

    Joaquin Mogollon
  • An Osmia species collected in San Francisco, California. Typically Osmia are a dark metallic blue, while this one is bright green.

    Jaime Pawelek
  • Many species of red-butted bumble bees call Wyoming home, including this Bombus flavifrons.

    Sam Droege
  • An obscure bee of the desert, Martinapis luteicornis is only active early in the morning just as the sky begins to lighten. This specimen was collected in Cochise County, Arizona.

    Amanda Robinson
  • Tim McMahon captured this Triepeolus species that still has remnants of pollen on his face in Cochise County, Arizona.

    Kelly Graninger
  • Claire Kremen's Bee Team collected this colorful Osmia calla in Yosemite National Park.

    Anders Croft
  • An exceptionally fuzzy male Martinapis luteicornis from Wilcox, Arizona.

    Dejen Mengis
  • Another specimen collected by Claire Kremen in Yosemite, this one a Bombus melanopygus.

    Anders Croft
  • Digger bees like this Habropoda excellens collected by K. Moredock in Utah, occur around the world across middle northern latitudes. They are plant specialists, collecting pollen from only a small number of all the plant species in an environment.

    Sam Droege
  • A female Protoxaea gloriosa covered in Arizona poppy pollen from Cochise County, Arizona.

    Kelly Graninger and Anders Croft
  • An Agapostemon femoratus, aptly named from the Latin femor (thigh), from Great Basin National Park, Nevada.

    Colby Francouer
  • A Diadasia rinconis with cacti pollen still stuck in her hairs, collected by Don Harvey in Pima County, Arizona.

    Sam Droege
  • A small Anthophora flexipes from the high lands of Yosemite National Park.

    Sam Droege
  • A male Hoplitis fulgida from Yosemite National Park.

    Anders Croft