Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 25
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Dexter, Michigan
    Posts
    46

    Default I have Mason Bee(s)

    So I've had my houses up for a few weeks now. Today is the first activity I've seen. There is a single tube in use by a single bee.

    It is larger than I thought they would be but looks just like the pictures on the web.

    I shall put out a small dish of wet soil and see if he/she plays in it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    White Rock, BC, Canada
    Posts
    30

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    Congratulations! spring was so late this year it's not surprising you're just seeing them now. If the bee is actively carrying pollen and coming and going from the tube e ery few minutes it would be a she bee

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Manitowoc WI USA
    Posts
    353

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    Do mason bees get along with honey bees?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    White Rock, BC, Canada
    Posts
    30

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    Quote Originally Posted by sevenmmm View Post
    Do mason bees get along with honey bees?
    Yes, no issue having them in the same backyard. In fact it's probably a great idea

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Dexter, Michigan
    Posts
    46

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    Bee number 2 has arrived and yes, it was carrying a yellow glob when it flew past.

    Here's the thing. The first bee I saw yesterday looked a lot like a honey bee, or what I think a honey bee looks like. It fit the tube but was as big as the opening.

    Today, the bee I saw was smaller and either dark blue or black.

    Do I have two kinds of bees using my house?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Tigard, OR
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    The first one you saw might have been something like a leaf-cutter bee, which looks similar to a honey bee but uses the same nesting system as the orchards; the second one, the dark green/blue/black was an orchard (or mason) bee.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Columbia county, New York, USA
    Posts
    1,535

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    I agree with Cris- two kinds of solitary bee.
    I get the blue orchard masons, but also some brownish fuzzy Osmia taurus and now horn faced bees too....the last two do sometimes look like small honeybees.

    Congratulations! Next year you will have 3 or 4 times as many nesting bees in those boxes, if you take care of them.
    The little bee returns with evening's gloom,
    To join her comrades in the braided hive... -Tennyson

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Dexter, Michigan
    Posts
    46

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    Ah yes...the larger bee DOES look like the leaf cutters who live/lived in the front yard (old chipmunk hole) last year.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Columbia county, New York, USA
    Posts
    1,535

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    If those 'leafcutter bees' wind up plugging their tubes with mud, then thay are not leafcutter bees but rather some other type of mason bee. Watch for if they are using cut/chewed green leaf bits for sealing the tubes.
    The little bee returns with evening's gloom,
    To join her comrades in the braided hive... -Tennyson

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Dexter, Michigan
    Posts
    46

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    I'll keep an eye on (in) their tubes and see what they are doing. I haven't seen them carrying mud but not sure what that would look like.

    Both times the two types were carrying yellow stuff. I assume pollen but maybe gold? : - )

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Dexter, Michigan
    Posts
    46

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    I grabbed a flashlight and took a look down a few of the tubes. 4 in the 2x6 blocks I drilled out are in use so far. Of the tubes I purchased, only one is in use, but they are hard to examine. It's kind of an optical illusion as they are so close together. Sort of like tunnel vision

    Question - there is a large, and stunning, jumping spider who is living in and around the bee house. Is he/she going to be a problem? I can remove the spider but I don't really want to if it won't be trouble.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Bucksport, Maine
    Posts
    177

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    I'm not going to say that it isn't a problem but there is a large one hanging around my blocks and I have 40 tubes mudded over, so most of them are getting by.
    Dave - PM me if you are interested in natural beekeeping in Hancock County Maine.
    http://www.davesbees.com

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Dexter, Michigan
    Posts
    46

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    as of tonight I would say 1/3 of the tubes have bees in them and 6 are now mudded over.
    I have a small, thin, black wasp looking fella living in one of the tubes too. Not sure how to get rid of him or even if I should.

    I'm going to try to mark that tube or at least take note of its position so I don't save it during the winter.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Bucksport, Maine
    Posts
    177

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    My season is done and I have around 60 tubes plugged. I'm an equal opportunity landlord....all are welcome. I know for sure I'll have a couple of cuckoo bees since I watch them sneeking from hole to hole waiting for a chance to lay an egg.
    Last edited by DavesBees; 06-03-2011 at 08:28 PM. Reason: fat fingers
    Dave - PM me if you are interested in natural beekeeping in Hancock County Maine.
    http://www.davesbees.com

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Dexter, Michigan
    Posts
    46

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    Hey Dave. I looked up the "Cuckoo Bee" online and the pictures are what I was thinking was the small black wasp. I think I may have one of those bees too.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Middlesex, MA USA
    Posts
    310

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    I made some mason bee houses by drilling 5/16" (I think) holes in and old non-PT 2x4. Something is just now using the holes. I think I saw a couple genuine mason bees (dark ones), but the few holes that are plugged seem to be filled with sawdust, not mud. Does that mean a different kind of bee, or that they can't find mud?

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Bucksport, Maine
    Posts
    177

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    Bees that work on their galleries will use the sawdust that they chew out just like a mason bee uses mud so I would say that you have another bee using the holes. With mason bees the constant mud source should be within 100 feet and 50 feet would even be better.
    Dave - PM me if you are interested in natural beekeeping in Hancock County Maine.
    http://www.davesbees.com

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Middlesex, MA USA
    Posts
    310

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    Cool, as long as I have happy pollinators. Will mason bees move in alongside others?

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Bucksport, Maine
    Posts
    177

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    I have only had alfalfa leafcutter bees and Mason bees in the same block. If you have variable hole sizes you'll probably get more variety of bees. I assume that your season for mason bees is over for this year though.
    Dave - PM me if you are interested in natural beekeeping in Hancock County Maine.
    http://www.davesbees.com

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Middlesex, MA USA
    Posts
    310

    Default Re: I have Mason Bee(s)

    You mean it's OVER? No more til next year? How disappointing! Maybe I'll get other kinds. As long as it's not wasps.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads