I love how the bees play with our ideas of how their home looks like if they can choose it themselves.
Autumn 2020, we are aware of 4 living colonies within a radius of 4 kilometres
One colony is living in a bunch of tires, close to the ground, in a pile of rusty farm gear.
Three live in olive trees, all very close to the ground, even partly in the soil.
One of these olive trees is a solitary survivor of a raging wild fire that happened in 2013. The bees are living in a hollow co-created by the fire. We were told that this tree already had bees before the fire. They might have survived in their earth-tree shelter. A vibrating beacon of life in a naked pasture.
One well established colony was discovered last spring, when the olive tree was freed from meters of dense brambles growing around her. Intriguing, how the bees have been navigating through the bramble bushes to reach their home. She is in a place where it gets damp during winter. This winter will be the first without that “bramble blanket” of protection. The nest entrance received a cork roof to give her a bit of shelter.
Our 2020 spring was filled with “BeeTree” vibrations. We found two more free living colonies, one in the base of a eucalyptus tree and another 4 meters high in a cork oak, with an opening bigger than an open hand. Both died. We are following who inhabits these hollows, curious if bees will return.