Summer Buzz

Hot, sunny days and warm, humid nights bring out insects galore. We celebrate the pollinators; the fireflies; the glorious bugs of summer. 

By Rhiannon Newman

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With crucial pollinators like honeybees and butterflies in deep trouble, and native insect populations in decline, we'd like to take a moment to celebrate bugs. Because bugs are amazing– their pollination efforts yield a third of the food we eat worldwide and they are critical decomposers of waste (keeping us from knee-deep nastiness). Ants, bees, wasps, and termites form huge cooperative colonies, while a variety of firefly species create their own light. Butterflies and moths change radically as they transition from juveniles to adults, literally liquifying and rearranging their insides as they hang in a state of suspended animation. Insects are fascinating, not to mention gorgeous. We need them, and we ought to love them too.  

Care about beneficial bugs? Join the crusade to save them! If you're in the US, participate in the Million Pollinator Garden Challenge. By growing and registering a pollinator garden (of any size– window boxes count!), you can help create critical habitat for your local insects. To learn how, visit

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`Rhiannon Newman is a photographer based in Washington, D.C. She combines her background in fine art photography with photojournalism, striving for striking compositions that buzz with color and energy. When her camera isn't glued to her face and she's not writing in the third person, you can find her putzing around her apartment, taking care of her many houseplants, or digging into a good banh mi. Find Rhiannon online at

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