Masthead header

Pollination Power book

My latest book – Pollination Power – was published in September 2015  by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Signed copies are available (UK customers only) from the  Shop.

It was a Finalist for Book Photographer of the Year in the Garden Media Guild 2015 Awards

Pollination Power is a beautiful and informative insight into the hidden secrets of plant pollination”  BBC Wildlife Magazine January 2016

“Heather Angel has over the course of a long career written her story in hundreds of thousands of images that have served to inform us, enlighten us and elevate our spirits.” Gray Levett, Editor, Nikon Owner Magazine

Below is a selection of images taken at Kew, in my Surrey garden and overseas.


01 Pollination Power Heather Angel

In addition to honeybees, many different types of insects pollinate flowers. They include bumblebees, solitary bees, wasps, beetles, hoverflies, flies, bee-flies, butterflies and moths. Below is a selection showing how pollen is transferred to varied parts of the body. Another post will show some vertebrate pollinators.

Bumblebee with dark blue and a plum hue pollen load foraging on oriental poppy, Papaver orientale

A bumblebee forages for pollen in an oriental poppy (Papaver orientale) with a large load in a pollen basket, RBG Kew, Surrey


As female wool carder bee enters Digitalis ferruginea she gets a pollen load on her head

When a female wool-carder bee (Anthidium manicatum) enters a rusty foxglove flower (Digitalis ferruginea) the anthers deposit pollen onto her head and thorax, RBG Kew, Surrey


Bee fly feeds on nectar from primrose

Bee-flies (Bombilius major) emerge as primroses open – one of several spring flowers pollinated by these insects, Surrey


Bumblebee scarabs Amphicoma (Pygopleurus) vulpes mating in Tulipa armena flower Turkey. Note pollen dispersed on inside of flower with a little on the beetles. Nr Karabet Pass

Bumblebee scarabs Amphicoma (Pygopleurus) vulpes meet and mate in Tulipa armena flower, where pollen is dispersed inside the flower and some on the beetles, Turkey


Hoverfly feeding on lily pollen

When a marmalade hoverfly (Episyrphus balteatus) feeds on sticky lily pollen, some gets picked up on its feet, from where it is transferred to the stigma of another lily that the insect visits, Surrey


Pineapple lily Eucomis bicolor from South Africa

Carrion flies are attracted to the foetid smell produced by this pineapple lily (Eucomis bicolor) from South Africa and pick up pollen on each side of the thorax as they reach for the nectar, Surrey


Wings on a Chinese peacock butterfly pick up pollen as the insect feeds on Hibiscus in Yunnan, China

As a swallowtail butterfly sips nectar from a hibiscus flower in China, the vibrating wings pick up pollen on their undersides

Signed copies are available (UK customers only) from my Shop

  • February 7, 2016 - 6:01 pm

    Natasha - Stunning photos! This was such an interesting post to read through too – I can’t believe I’ve only just found your photography. Love that final shot of the swallowtail. – TashaReplyCancel

    • February 8, 2016 - 3:07 pm

      Heather - Thanks Tasha. I was thrilled to get the swallowtail in China as it did not hang around.ReplyCancel

  • May 15, 2016 - 8:21 am

    Sandra - Your photos are just superb, Heather. I have been looking around here on your blog in all its nooks and crannies. So inspiring and beautiful. Your latest book on the power of pollination looks just lovely!

    All the images above are just breathtaking. I especially love the bumblebee on the red poppy and how you caught the pollen flowing away from the snowdrop.ReplyCancel

    • May 15, 2016 - 6:50 pm

      xpolar - Thanks Sandra. Now working on an even more ambitious pollination book – loving exploring new sites, discovering new flowers and pollinators here and abroad.ReplyCancel