West Coast National Park, South Africa 2020
A Spider Monkey Beetle (Lepithrix pseudolineata) and a tiny Collembola meet on a wild daisy. While South Africa and the world struggled with the ongoing challenges of Covid-19, the Western Cape and Namaqualand were painted with colour as a carpet of flowers transformed the land. This natural phenomenon is breathtaking to behold. Caught in the middle of the bloom I found myself not only focusing on the landscape but also the smaller things.
Insects are the lifeblood of this transformation, pollinating as they journey from flower to flower. Monkey Beetles take advantage of the vast spring flowers, which offer an abundant source of pollen to feed on. They will visit a range of flower shapes and colours, manically flying from flower to flower, eating pollen and searching for mates. Male beetles actively seek out female beetles in the flowers. These beautiful podiums act as not only a source of food but a place to fight with other males, and if successful; mate.