Bee hotels / houses

It can make sense if it’s a high-quality material. Otherwise, the result won’t be positive.

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Good point, I thinking about the larger holes that I see on most setups. That’s an interesting idea to add mud blocks, I wonder if that would work for other Anthophora.

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It’s been on my to do list for a while to try a couple of Bumble Bee houses, but from what I have managed to find out about them, they have to “weather” for a year or so before they get traffic. A friend of a friend is having similar results with his.

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I think that it can, for other species of similar nesting requirements (depends of course what species are in the area and whether females find the block more atractive than “natural” places available). I read also about creating nesting sites of wood for Anthophora furcata which excavates her nest in there. I don’t know how readily they are inhabited.

It depends, often bumblebee homes have very low success in settlement but I think it may depend on many factors, a bit of luck included :)

Yes, it’s a problem that talking of bee hotels we often think about hotels with bad design which are popular in stores. Best is to do it yourself if one wants to have bee hotel, it has additionally an educational value, especially when it is made with help of children.

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A simple mud pot will also be helpful,
An abandoned solitary bees house was in my pot

In this, I found a bee cocoon, I thought it was a dead bee, later new bee emerges

new bee emerges from cocoon

My means of saying is that if you don’t fill you pot to rim with water just spray your plant it can be a natural bee hotel itself :)

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I don’t know whether this species is invasive or native, because they are still mystery to me :)

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Welcome to the forum! I find your post is reassuring (scaremongering is for clicks) and that making a bee hotels from a log could be more effective. What size drill bit would be good?

There is a fair amount of deadwood nearby me. Would that work? Any idea what tree species may work better? Oaks, conifers?

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I like this idea. Do you think there is a link to a suitable DIY project for kids?

They’re not as pretty or rustic looking as the wooden ones, but these bee houses are filled with volcanic rock powder between the tubes to keep parasites and fungus from moving between the tubes. They also have different tube sizes for different kinds of bees.

https://masonbeenest.com/

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@colinpurrington 's post above has links you can check out including links to a bunch of examples

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Looks to me like genus Halictus (furrow bee), almost certainly native - bees that nest in dirt are much less likely to end up shipped overseas than ones that can build nests in materials that will be exported and imported.

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According to where you are living, it could be a problem for the biodiversity you wanted to help…
See : “Bee hotels host a high abundance of exotic bees in an urban context” :
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1146609X20300485
Errol.

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I second @mollymjacobson and @justyna_kierat’s comments suggesting people think about making habitat for ground-nesting bees, and I want to add that doing so can be easy, fun, and expose you to a lot of bee diversity. A whole bunch of bee species nest in my yard, and I keep it that way by being as lazy as possible about yard work. I wrote about it here:
https://www.wanativebeesociety.org/post/the-accidental-pollinator-garden-part-1-bare-dirt-for-bees
https://www.wanativebeesociety.org/post/the-accidental-pollinator-garden-part-2-plants-and-lack-of-pesticides

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For North America, ground nesting bees are about 70% of species. As others have said, the 30% is mostly Megachilidae and Colletidae. I think bee hotels are a fun idea and worth trying, but don’t be surprised if you host mason wasps too. I found one Megachile nest in a hollow plant stem this year.

The key goals for bee conservation in our gardens are a wide range of native plants and wild habitat, which includes leaving dead branches, old flower stalks, leaf litter, bare soil, etc. Obviously pesticides are bad and also think about ground disturbance, like tilling soil where squash bees may have nested the summer before or aerating a lawn. Fall is important because many people tidy their yards by raking and pruning and leaf blowing. Let it bee! Also, think about buying and sowing wildflowers for next year. I can recommend some businesses.

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We have a few bits of wood with holes of various sizes drilled in them set up around the garden. Some of the holes have been filled in or closed over, so some creatures are using them. However so far I haven’t seen what goes in or emerges. What I have seen is a rather gorgeous cuckoo wasp:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/88780631
which was presumably looking for a suitable host for its eggs.
When I searched iNat for other observations of cuckoo wasps in my part of the world (southern Australia), it seemed many of the photos were taken on bee hotels. I don’t know if that is a plus or minus for bee hotels!

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Gorgeous animal!

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Co-incidentally, here is a spider wasp on the same “bee hotel”:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/98461781
Either looking for spiders, or for somewhere to put a spider.

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