By Tom Mendelsohn

A SWARM of bees take a few moments out of their busy schedule to relax and have a drink

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A bug's life: A close-up of the thirsty bees as they have a much-needed drink

The usually industrious workers were captured quenching their thirst by South African photographer Derek Turner in a bird bath in his back garden.

He believes he was able to snap this unusual sight due to a severe drought that is currently affecting much of the country. 

Derek said: “Rainy season has already started but we are still waiting anxiously for
 rain to come. 

Bee's a crowd: The insects lean over the edge to enjoy a tipple

"As such all nature’s creatures are seeking water in the extreme heat, and have found that getting water from the bird bath
 in my back yard is the ideal uninterrupted supply.”

Temperatures in Derek’s home town of Sun City can reach 40 degrees Celsius or more at this time of year, and even insects like bees need to find ways to cool off.

Let's bee friends: Two of the insects enjoy each other's company at the edge of the bird bath

These bees are African honey bees, which live in large swarms in the area of this South African tourist resort.

Earning their stripes: The happy bees drink away

Derek said: "As we are next to
 the Pilanesberg game reserve, the area is still very much bush, and an ideal hideaway from city life for these little creatures.

“I have come to learn that by just sitting and taking careful note and observing one’s surroundings, nature presents a lot of opportunities for awesome photographs.”

Making a beeline: The winged insects enjoy a drink from the bird bath

African honey bees are very similar to European species, but they’re known for being much more aggressive and a little smaller.

African hives will send out as much as four times as many workers to respond to a threat, and they will pursue for a longer distance.

These bees, however, are clearly interested in nothing more than pursuing a cold drink in hot weather.