Honey bees

Walking trails in the Center

 

The Australian outback is an amazing world of contrast:  red and black cliffs, dry desert landscape with water-filled gorges, prickly spiky plants with  soft colourful flowers, beautiful birds and their loud calls.  I was lucky enough to call Australia my home when I was a child and always look forward to going back, seeing my family and having another look at the land.  This year, I spent quite a bit of my holidays in Australia’s Center.  I wanted to check out more of the land and walking is a great way of doing it.  We bought our food and water from the town of Alice Spring and went walking along a number of different trails.
 
 
Depending on the light, cliffs are either red, burnt orange
purple or varying co.lours in between.
Honey bee colony on a cliff in the Center.

We saw quite a bit of wild life including kangaroos and lots of birds.  There were very few insects around because night time temperatures were around freezing a lot of the nights.  I was pleasantly surprised though  when Matt showed me a honey bee colony.  Matt told me he had seen them at this location before.  It  was about 30 feet up on a cliff.  Honey bee comb attached to an open cliff would be a rare sight in Canada, but in Desert country it is the perfect place.  There is very little rain to speak of so a colony does not need protection from the rain.    Since it had rained recently, trees and shrubs were showing off their bloom.  This of course means food for  honey bees.

 
Gum tree flowers with a foraging honey bee.
Hakia flowers provide lots of nectar for birds called Honey-eaters
River beds and cliffs provide great habitat for all kinds

of wildlife including lizards, cliff dwelling birds and hawks.

 

In the next little while, I will be adding a few more blogs of my trip.  You can imagine the number of photos I took!  Have a great summer!
 
 
 

 

 
 

This is one of my favorite flowers!  Dandelions are a welcome color in the spring and they are a great source of both nectar and pollen for bees and other insects.  

Most gardeners believe dandelion flowers are a nuisance weed and therefore it has to be removed from their green lawn.  


If a gardener provides lots of flowers, more bees are in the garden and it generally means better pollination for fruit trees.




This honey bee (left hand side) and mason bee are too busy feeding on a dandelion flower to notice
the photographer Dave M.  Port Alberni, BC.