The yellow bee orchid, scientifically known as Ophrys Lutea, is a very rare species of wild orchids in Malta. This elegant orchid has a broad bright yellow labellum (the most prominent petal). It is found in various parts of Europe but is known to grow only in a handful of locations in Malta.
This orchid’s flowers have a distinct yellow coloration with brown markings. The flower’s shape and color pattern closely resemble a female bee, complete with a fuzzy texture and even a small “bee-like” labellum. This remarkable mimicry attracts male bees, which attempt to mate with the flower, inadvertently transferring pollen from one orchid to another.
Although nothing is impossible, you should consider yourself a very lucky orchid-hunter if you stumble across this very rare orchid.
As all orchids in Malta, it is important to note that the yellow bee orchid is a protected species, and it is illegal to pick or disturb these orchids in their natural habitat. Visitors to Malta are encouraged to admire these beautiful flowers from a distance and respect their conservation status.
20Twenty offers Mindful Nature Photography walks with a professional where you can take in some breathtaking views and enjoy some of Malta’s indigenous nature up close. For more information or to book this activity, please contact us on [email protected].
Text and photos by: Johan Siggesson