BUGS, CONSERVATION, FLORA, GRASSLAND, WILDLIFE

An orchid that looks like a bee!

The Bee Orchid’s awesome mimicry has evolved through natural selection. Flowers which looked more like a bee, would have been pollinated more often. These plants therefore produced more seeds and so passed on their ‘bee-like’ genes to each successive generation!

The Bees responsible for pollinating the Bee orchid’s through this technique belong to the solitary bee genus Eucera. Unfortunately these long-horned bees are only found in the Mediterranean, and so our British bee orchids have to do all the work themselves through self-pollination!

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