Nature's Place

A Time For …

…  bees again?

There are Banana trees in the back yard that the Possum and Bats, Flying Foxes they are called, love to eat from when the fruit is ripe enough. I’m watchful to get a few myself this year, as last. The trouble with the trees though is they are big and one recent day I went out and noticed one of them had been cut down, the one that was about to fall on the neighbours shed, that I was going to cut down anyway. Well, a little something I didn’t have to do, no harm.

And I have had to cut down a few of them to keep them from becoming a nuisance, to the civilisation of back yards bordering onto each other, or falling on the clothes line, or the person below. One I cut down was about, what, 20ft tall? And it fell towards the Frangipani, one with lovely red flowers, and broke an extensive piece off it. So, not to waste or leave it for the passers by that took last years cuttings I planted it in the front garden. I’ve been doing a lot of work in the front garden, for the flowers and bugs and photos.

It’s not as if I haven’t done this before but such a large piece, about five feet tall and branched, I wasn’t sure it would work. I plant it in the ground, in a spot it fits, some might say ‘it likes’, and water it enough to keep it from drying out and losing its leaves. It seems to be working; at least it has new shoots and is showing no ill signs so far, maybe a little soft at the extremities.

What I do every day is fill a bucket with water and every now and then go and pour enough to drench the ground, a brown clay soil, and as I said it seems to be working and in about 10 or so years will provide shade in that corner from the setting sun.


The thing is whenever I go to the bucket and look in I often find some creature that has fallen in the water and hasn’t found a way out yet. So I take care of that first, put a finger under the creature and bring it to the top of a branch and let it off to dry out on the Frangipani tip. Where it sits and grooms itself, wanders about, tastes the water, and sometimes falls back in the bucket below – that’s livin.

The other thing is most of what I find are bees, tiny bees that I have seen nowhere else but in the water bucket. Isn’t that an odd thing? They are less than 1cm long, 10mm, barely visible except for something to see them against.  If it wasn’t for all that preceded it I would not know of these particular bees, the ones from the yellow water bucket.

How one thing always leads to another, everything has consequences. Some can be predicted, and some only generally so. But the wonder is in the not knowing. You can try and work it all out but what a mental waste, just wait and see.

You never know what nature is going to show up or where. But one thing’s for sure; you’ll see more of it if you are out in it.

Whatever ‘it’ is. Sense, nature, getting the hands dirty, seeing, smelling, doing whatever.

It’s a pleasure.

Mark Berkery ……. Click any picture and click again to enlarge


28 Responses

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  1. davidreafforestation said, on 30/04/2012 at 10:01 am

    Stunning photography, thank you.

  2. Vanessa said, on 26/04/2012 at 8:46 am

    wow, so beautiful, may I know your camera’s brand and series numbers, please?

  3. Anthony Tancredi said, on 13/01/2012 at 9:00 pm

    A real little beauty Mark. Looks very back heavy! No wonder the bees are hard to find… all too busy swimming in your ‘pool’. I think they have the right idea at the moment :)

    • Mark said, on 14/01/2012 at 9:14 am

      Hello Anthony. Hard to find? Come over my way and I’ll show you bee central.

  4. Jenn said, on 10/01/2012 at 1:43 pm

    Beautiful Mark. Our human eyes miss so much or is it for the protection of the wee ones they are inadequate!

    • Mark said, on 14/01/2012 at 9:12 am

      Thanks Jenn, don’t I know you? Probably right, until recently if we could have seen the beauty that is only available to be seen through the camera we might just have made headdresses and necklaces of them, dried of course.

  5. jamyunjamiun micheal said, on 10/01/2012 at 10:30 am

    alway superb it so much..

  6. Daniel said, on 09/01/2012 at 7:18 pm

    Beautiful Mark, they look much like the native honey bees I see over here (WA).
    There’s ones like this with the red-ish abdomen and others with black abdomens, but I think they’re the same species. I’ve seen them on flowers as well as swimming like you’ve seen.

    • Mark said, on 14/01/2012 at 9:10 am

      Thanks Daniel. Do you mean the Stingless or Sugarbag? I’ve seen the two kinds as well, no idea where they nest or if they make honey.

      • Daniel said, on 14/01/2012 at 5:38 pm

        Sugar-bag, stingless, sweat bee and native honey bee all seem to be names that are interchangeable throughout the small Aussie bees. The things I read suggest that they do make small amounts of honey, but that is just an assumption based on the info available to me, I’ve never seen a nest myself.
        As with most of the smaller critters, it’s hard to find information on them unless you know exactly what they are to begin with. Plus a lot of the ID photos are of poor quality or perspective which makes IDing even harder.
        Lets just call them native bees, shall we. :)

        • Mark said, on 14/01/2012 at 6:05 pm

          Hello Daniel.

 is one of the best sites I’ve come across for bees. Anne and ??? have done extensive field work on bees. And you’re right, not a lot is know about native bees, can be said about Aus nature generally.

          This a Sugarback/native honey bee – It produces small amounts of honey and people harvest it, don’t know of another native honey bee, doesn’t mean there isn’t one.

          As far as I know this is a Fire Tailed Resin Bee – Much bigger than the one in the post above.

          I thought a Sweat Bee is a different one again, but local naming varies too, doesn’t it.

          There’s a host of different bees in Aus. I think I’ve got about 20 different kinds/species posted here somewhere.

  7. Lunar Euphoria said, on 09/01/2012 at 11:07 am

    Aaah! Love the rainbow in its wings.

    • Mark said, on 14/01/2012 at 9:08 am

      Thanks Lunar. The world of bees is a colourful place all right.

  8. krikitarts said, on 09/01/2012 at 9:41 am

    A wonderful little creature, beautifully captured. I can’t wait for warmer weather here to put my new achromatic lens (thanks to you) to good use! Nice to see another of your posts!

    • Mark said, on 14/01/2012 at 9:07 am

      Thanks K, there’ll be more – I think. Time to practise on stationary things then.

  9. Scotty McAdam said, on 09/01/2012 at 6:57 am

    Fantastic mate. Amazing stuff as usual.

  10. tmso said, on 09/01/2012 at 6:00 am

    Absolutely lovely yellow-bucket-bee. My favorite is the last shot.

    You have inspired me to forego my writing chores today and play in the garden. Thanks!

    • Mark said, on 14/01/2012 at 9:05 am

      Yellow Bucket Bee, that’s a good name. Writing’s for the night-time, garden for the day. How else could it be.

  11. Bill Mackie said, on 09/01/2012 at 5:50 am

    WOW!!! what stunning pics Mark. Thanks for sharing them with me.
    Kind regards,

  12. Rob Slaven said, on 09/01/2012 at 5:38 am

    Wow. I can’t wait for summer to strike in my neck of the woods and bring all the insects back.

    • Mark said, on 14/01/2012 at 9:02 am

      Careful what you wish for Rob … :)

  13. Jack said, on 09/01/2012 at 5:06 am

    Great shots Mark! Love that first one. Always enjoy the story/observations that go along with your posts too.

    Best, Jack

    • Mark said, on 14/01/2012 at 9:01 am

      Thanks Jack. I couldn’t post a pic without some story to go with it … :)

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