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Pollen Colour Chart

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Any feedback would be helpful.

I’d especially like to find the measured protein percentages for various pollen sources. Any scientists at Ruakura or Lincoln or Massey out there? 

I’m starting to paint some Nz pollen colour charts. There’s very little on the net and Walsh is fabulous but I’m better if I can see colours. Probably season by season. Summer will need at least 200 on one page.

This is a draft and just a start.

any feedback on what might be standard components or ways to show information.

The navy blue with black writing is a problem. 

I need to find some white Indian ink for labelling these dark pollen colours

It will be handmade and fine arts in its look, I’m not coming at it from a designers angle.

8D72A41E-6738-4031-88B4-8E15269D5ED8.jpeg

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Nicely done. Better than Walsh (for this sort of thing) published in 1994 "A Colour Guide to the Pollen Loads of the Honey Bee" by William D.J. Kirk.ISBN 0860982165. However, there are no references for endemic NZ flora. I have suggested constructing one as a sort of 'citizen science' project using 'Colours of New Zealand' paint charts.

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'Trees for Bees' were starting to test protein levels for native plants a couple of years ago and may have some info available.

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"Pollen Grains of NZ Dicotyledonous Plants" by N T Moar has a zillion monochrome prints that just need colouring in ........

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8 hours ago, Sailabee said:

'Trees for Bees' were starting to test protein levels for native plants a couple of years ago and may have some info available.

Yes that was the source for the information here, but the list is just 3 pages long. I may not be able to gather any more data. Obviously sources will be acknowledged on the back of the art work. 

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5 hours ago, yesbut said:

"Pollen Grains of NZ Dicotyledonous Plants" by N T Moar has a zillion monochrome prints that just need colouring in ........

Brilliant tip! I will try to source it. 

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8 hours ago, Dave Black said:

Nicely done. Better than Walsh (for this sort of thing) published in 1994 "A Colour Guide to the Pollen Loads of the Honey Bee" by William D.J. Kirk.ISBN 0860982165. However, there are no references for endemic NZ flora. I have suggested constructing one as a sort of 'citizen science' project using 'Colours of New Zealand' paint charts.

I was so hoping I would get feedback from you @Dave Black and @yesbut and others. It is well appreciated. 

 

It’s just a draft at this point. I’m going to have trouble fitting enough individual pollen images into 4 seasonal posters. I may have to go to A1. I work on cold pressed watercolour paper with gouache and watercolours usually so it depends what I can source as paper stock.

 

Your idea of the citizen science project using sounds outstanding. What form would the interface take? Go for it, sounds like a great design task for an intern or student. There is a real gap in the information available in this area of study. 

 

Is it more than just aesthetically/visually useful to people in the sector ? Hmm I think it might encourage people to plant a larger diversity of plants for bees in shelter belts and on edges of cultivated sites. There’s real value in that wild flower meadow. Shelter belts can provide so much more than shelter. Yes the information might be useful agriculturally.

 What I do here will be hand painted, and probably one off since I have other ideas I’d would like to get onto paper fairly soon too ( periodic table )

 

So I should go ahead I think. Even if I can’t give protein percentages and complete information for all pollens. 

 

I will try to source Dorothy Hodges work too. 

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Seasonal posters are a good idea. As a practical application beeks have to learn to look and spot seasonal and geographical forage dearths and limitations and watching for pollen variety is part of that. Strict biological accuracy is not required.

If we are going for biological accuracy choose Kirk over Hodges, but they cover the same ground.

It's interesting that current work in the field does not always show diversity is the thing for honey bees, but can be good to support a variety of other pollinators. What TfBs advise is to identify your local forage shortfall and plant to correct it. Whatever scenario you prefer, the fact remains that somehow you have to spark an interest so that people are thinking about it, and art is a way to do it that. I wouldn't get hung up on the work being a source of data and facts.

Something else you might find stimulating is Heather Angel's Pollination Power (ISBN 9780226366913), but it is expensive. Put it on your Xmas list.

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11 hours ago, Dave Black said:

Seasonal posters are a good idea. As a practical application beeks have to learn to look and spot seasonal and geographical forage dearths and limitations and watching for pollen variety is part of that. Strict biological accuracy is not required.

If we are going for biological accuracy choose Kirk over Hodges, but they cover the same ground.

It's interesting that current work in the field does not always show diversity is the thing for honey bees, but can be good to support a variety of other pollinators. What TfBs advise is to identify your local forage shortfall and plant to correct it. Whatever scenario you prefer, the fact remains that somehow you have to spark an interest so that people are thinking about it, and art is a way to do it that. I wouldn't get hung up on the work being a source of data and facts.

Something else you might find stimulating is Heather Angel's Pollination Power (ISBN 9780226366913), but it is expensive. Put it on your Xmas list.

I appreciate feedback about references, it’s helpful to know your thoughts on Kirk. There might have to be several versions, I’ll consider the first ones drafts so I don’t get too hung up by fact, I’ll to get the general idea down on paper first and then evaluate what can be corrected or expanded.

Right I have my Xmas book list all lined up.

That is interesting to know current research doesn’t always show diversity is the thing for honey bees.

You have hit the nail on the head, spotting times in the year when you have a shortfall in forage lets you plant to correct it. Yes hopefully art and collaborative visual resources might spark collective interest. I’ll make some progress on the draft artwork now. 

 

I hope your citizen science project comes to fruition.

 

 

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On 27/11/2018 at 10:10 AM, Dave Black said:

A Colour Guide to the Pollen Loads of the Honey Bee" by William D.J. Kirk.I

I have Kirk, W D J, 2010, IBRA, ISBN: 0-86098-263-7. Pollen Identification Cards. A month-by-month practical colour guide to the pollen loads collected by honey bees. Each laminated card depicts 10 plants with additional information on the reverse.

 Have requested to view Kirks more extensive publication at GNS and Callahan Innovation in Wellington, they seem to be the only two institutions recorded on WorldCat as holding copies in NZ. I’ll keep searching for a copy held closer to home. Either that or its a road trip ....

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On 27/11/2018 at 12:50 PM, yesbut said:

"Pollen Grains of NZ Dicotyledonous Plants" by N T Moar has a zillion monochrome prints that just need colouring in ........

I have requested to view a copy held at Scion Research in Rotorua, hopefully they might grant access.

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Flax pollen colour question: I observed that Phormium tenax, Swamp flax/Harakeke pollen in my girls corbiculae is a deep salmon colour.

 

My question is, once packed into corbiculae, are the pollen colours of Phormium cookianum var. hookerii Coastal flax and Phormium cookianum Mountain flax different hues or tones to that of the deep salmon coloured pollen on my Swamp flax?

 

I don’t have any mature Coastal flaxes flowering in our garden, and the images online show the pollen on Caostal Flax as a cadmium yellow colour aging to beige. Online images might be showing limited colour variations, new pollen as opposed to mature pollen. Walsh implies all phormium pollen is a deep salmon colour.

 

Best to ask.

 

 

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1 hour ago, GoED said:

Flax pollen colour question: I observed that Phormium tenax, Swamp flax/Harakeke pollen in my girls corbiculae is a deep salmon colour.

 

My question is, once packed into corbiculae, are the pollen colours of Phormium cookianum var. hookerii Coastal flax and Phormium cookianum Mountain flax different hues or tones to that of the deep salmon coloured pollen on my Swamp flax?

 

I don’t have any mature Coastal flaxes flowering in our garden, and the images online show the pollen on Caostal Flax as a cadmium yellow colour aging to beige. Online images might be showing limited colour variations, new pollen as opposed to mature pollen. Walsh implies all phormium pollen is a deep salmon colour.

 

Best to ask.

 

 

I have costal flax , shall I look at the pollen .

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6 hours ago, GoED said:

I have requested to view a copy held at Scion Research in Rotorua, hopefully they might grant access.

I'll send you my copy . It's just occupying shelf space, I have lost the pollen analysis (learning) urge...PM me your address...

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8 hours ago, kaihoka said:

My question is, once packed into corbiculae, are the pollen colours of Phormium cookianum var. hookerii Coastal flax and Phormium cookianum Mountain flax different hues or tones to that of the deep salmon coloured pollen on my Swamp flax?

 

I don’t have any mature Coastal flaxes flowering in our garden, and the images online show the pollen on Caostal Flax as a cadmium yellow colour aging to beige. Online images might be showing limited colour variations, new pollen as opposed to mature pollen. Walsh implies all phormium pollen is a deep salmon colour.

9 hours ago, GoED said:

 Have requested to view Kirks more extensive publication at GNS and Callahan Innovation in Wellington, they seem to be the only two institutions recorded on WorldCat as holding copies in NZ. I’ll keep searching for a copy held closer to home. Either that or its a road trip ....

Any photographer will tell you about colour matching, and so does Kirk! Unless you have a very fancy monitor and properly set up white balance yes computer colours will vary from print colours. Nor are print colours constant, but CMYK values will be better and more constant than photography or VDUs. The colour of the light you are using will affect the colour you see; Kirk tried to standardize on an indirect, overhead, bright sunlight source, and to be careful about reflections. Even holding the pollen load was avoided, he tried to spear it with a pin and hold it over a plain white card so reflections off his fingers didn't affect the perceived colour. The colour usually darkens as it ages, so he tried to use only freshly collected, uncontaminated samples. The colour of the collected 'load' is different from that in the flower, because of the way bees treat it, and similarly, they are different from the same pollen collected by other kinds of bees. In his book there are often three colour samples for each showing the natural range of colour for the species in question. As well, our eyes all differ slightly (sometime hugely!) in the way we perceive colours. I suppose my message is, close enough is good enough. Colour is not the only identifier.

 

I can't tell you much about flax, I have two types, tenax and something variegated. Both are bright orange (smoked salmon).

 

As you are not very far away we might be able to come to some arrangement with respect to Kirk's little book, as long as that includes me keeping it. I know it's possible to buy copies on Amazon at around UKP20, and I would think IBRA might be a source too, but buying one is a bit excessive for this use I'd think. It was designed as a field guide, so it's not an extensive reference work. (54 pages, wire ring-bound, A5)

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15 hours ago, yesbut said:

I'll send you my copy . It's just occupying shelf space, I have lost the pollen analysis (learning) urge...PM me your address...

Wow thank you @yesbut how generous. It will of course be treated carefully and returned, its not easy to find or replace. I will PM you....

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12 hours ago, Dave Black said:

Any photographer will tell you about colour matching, and so does Kirk! Unless you have a very fancy monitor and properly set up white balance yes computer colours will vary from print colours. Nor are print colours constant, but CMYK values will be better and more constant than photography or VDUs. The colour of the light you are using will affect the colour you see; Kirk tried to standardize on an indirect, overhead, bright sunlight source, and to be careful about reflections. Even holding the pollen load was avoided, he tried to spear it with a pin and hold it over a plain white card so reflections off his fingers didn't affect the perceived colour. The colour usually darkens as it ages, so he tried to use only freshly collected, uncontaminated samples. The colour of the collected 'load' is different from that in the flower, because of the way bees treat it, and similarly, they are different from the same pollen collected by other kinds of bees. In his book there are often three colour samples for each showing the natural range of colour for the species in question. As well, our eyes all differ slightly (sometime hugely!) in the way we perceive colours. I suppose my message is, close enough is good enough. Colour is not the only identifier.

 

I can't tell you much about flax, I have two types, tenax and something variegated. Both are bright orange (smoked salmon).

 

As you are not very far away we might be able to come to some arrangement with respect to Kirk's little book, as long as that includes me keeping it. I know it's possible to buy copies on Amazon at around UKP20, and I would think IBRA might be a source too, but buying one is a bit excessive for this use I'd think. It was designed as a field guide, so it's not an extensive reference work. (54 pages, wire ring-bound, A5)

Wow thank you @Dave Black Kirk will be treated carefully and returned with a month. I will PM you ...

 

That variegated Flax of yours is Phormium cookianum in origin from what I understand, so that’s sounding like the phormium pollen appears to be deep salmon in colour, I’ll Be interested to hear what @kaihokas coastal flax pollen looks like when it flowers.

 

Indeed colour is not the only identifier, consistency comes into play. I have approached Landcare Research to see if I might be given access to further findings on protein percentages and pollen photos. I have printed out their relevant Trees for Bees resources. I will be interested to see what the response is.

 

Yes I have been nutting out what to do about the natural colour range for each species...and yes close enough is near enough, it is after all being processed through my own eyes. I’m a sculptor, old school illustrator and watercolourist in short. My partner is a fine arts photographer so can do all the tricky CMKY value analysis doo doo ding a ling stuff. I’m eyeing up his fancy A2 printer too, if its viable I’m planning to do prints for you YesBut of the four art works. Let’s hope the written details show if reduced by 50%. I drew 3000+ hexagons yesterday. First things first though I need to make the work, aye.

 

It’s all up for interpretation. 

C63EB13D-27FA-45DF-9162-D4DD96A34D13.jpeg

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13 minutes ago, GoED said:

I’m eyeing up his fancy A2 printer too, if its viable I’m planning to do prints for you YesBut

Well don't forget to pm yr address

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4 hours ago, yesbut said:

Well don't forget to pm yr address

Done ?

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Enough procrastination, got to draw final hexagons, painting not far away now.

30226153-1246-4D9F-9F4E-ACA11451E51E.jpeg

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For protein etc consult the following (all free downloads):

Somerville, D. (2001). Nutritional Value of Bee Collected Pollens
Somerville, D. (2005). Fat Bees, Skinny Bees.

 

11 hours ago, GoED said:

I’m a sculptor, old school illustrator and watercolourist in short. My partner is a fine arts photographer

 

I'm jealous of such skill, but it suggests you might appreciate a related project I'm following; https://3dpollenproject.wixsite.com/main

I would like to be a fine arts photographer, but I just take pictures. :)

 

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11 hours ago, Dave Black said:

For protein etc consult the following (all free downloads):

Somerville, D. (2001). Nutritional Value of Bee Collected Pollens
Somerville, D. (2005). Fat Bees, Skinny Bees.

 

 

I'm jealous of such skill, but it suggests you might appreciate a related project I'm following; https://3dpollenproject.wixsite.com/main

I would like to be a fine arts photographer, but I just take pictures. :)

 

Ahh but how clearly and lucidly you summarise and write. I really appreciate these additional references. Laborious hexagonal drawing finished, paint application begins today.

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The 3D Pollen Project is fascinating. The 3D printable models are wonderful. Many of my earliest bronzes were influenced by pollen and cell forms.

 

The website led me down a rabbit hole. Hard pollen shells, photochemicals, nutrients, delivery of vaccines and medicines inside cleaned pollen shells. You have to wonder at what society might be like in 2119.

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12 hours ago, Dave Black said:

For protein etc consult the following (all free downloads):

Somerville, D. (2001). Nutritional Value of Bee Collected Pollens
Somerville, D. (2005). Fat Bees, Skinny Bees.

 

 

I'm jealous of such skill, but it suggests you might appreciate a related project I'm following; https://3dpollenproject.wixsite.com/main

I would like to be a fine arts photographer, but I just take pictures. :)

 

Somerville-exactly what I needed thank you @Dave Black. Key information I didn’t have. The charts will benefit from this. 

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On 3/12/2018 at 10:24 AM, kaihoka said:

I have costal flax , shall I look at the pollen .

...this is the variegated tricolour hybrid but still a Coastal flax. Interesting, some plants have pollen of more than one colour, so your green leaved Coastal flaxes, that parent plant to the Tricolour might have a bicolour pollen too. 

510CE3BD-19F7-4A7C-AD41-B42F93A09894.jpeg

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