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Bee with No Stripes Discovered in Kenya

Dino Martins | National Geographic   in  ·
March 2, 2015

It has a black head and a bright orange body, and velociraptor-like claws on its hind legs.

It lives underground, not in a hive.

And it lives by itself, instead of in the huge colonies we’re used to.

Here’s the story of the discovery of the world’s newest known bee.

Bee-ing There

The hot, dusty bush and deserts of Turkana in Northern Kenya are one of our planet’s most remote and exciting regions to explore. This harsh landscape is famous for its long record of human and vertebrate evolution – as part of the work of the Leakey family. The Turkana Basin holds the shimmering Lake Turkana that lies in the middle of the African Great Rift Valley.

Turkana is also a region with unique biodiversity, that has adapted to the hot, dry conditions. At first look deserts and drylands may appear bleak and devoid of life. However, nothing could be further from the truth: these regions are teeming with life, but living things here have adapted to the extreme conditions, and often stay hidden or dormant for long periods of time. After brief rains life erupts with an unrivaled exuberance to make the most of the flowers and opportunity.

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