And, on an even closer look, there were my girls, bumble bees, sweat bees, bee flies, leaf cutter bees, and several kinds of paper and mud dauber wasps buzzing around them. In fact, they were being quite territorial, and buzzbumping each other off of the flowers to get to the ones they wanted; "I was here first!"
Those that were successful were climbing all the way up into the tiny flowers to the point that their little abdominal butts were all that was left visible. As they did so, their pollen sacs were being loaded with a bright orangey yellow pollen.
The sun was almost set and it was now 8:30 pm; we'd been watching for about an hour. The summer solstice was upon us, so the days had become much longer. But, there was still a lot of light in the sky. The girls kept coming, flying from the backyard hives, over the house, and into the lilies. The word was obviously out! It's happy hour at the local neighborhood tiki torch bar! Come one, come all!
Since bees use the sun to navigate to and from their hives, I was wondering how late they would stay. I soon got my answer. Promptly at 8:35 pm, no more honey bees. The bumble bees lingered a bit longer sipping in the nectar. But, all the other bees and wasps were now gone, too. A hummingbird dropped in briefly for a sip, and was gone. Last call, the bar doors were closing. By 9:00 pm, the bumble bees were all gone, too.