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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Dexter, Michigan
    Posts
    46

    Default how many bees in a tube?

    I suppose it varies but I have a drilled 2x6 per Dave's instructions and the first tube is mudded over at the opening.

    About how many larva are in there?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    40

    Default Re: how many bees in a tube?

    It definitely varies based on a whole lot of factors.
    Anywhere between 3 and 7 would be my guess.
    I've found you get far fewer eggs per tube when you use plastic straws, and more eggs when you use paper tubes or natural products like reeds.
    Last edited by Seattleite; 05-22-2011 at 10:39 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Limestone, Alabama
    Posts
    577

    Default Re: how many bees in a tube?

    Like you said it varies from bee to bee and from season to season. Forage availability and weather are large factors. With my own mason bees I've seen as few as 5 cocoons and as many as 13 cocoons per 6 inch straw.

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

    Default Re: how many bees in a tube?

    I would agree hard to say for sure until you open it in the fall. I find sometimes the female MUDs the end shut without the tube being a full as it could be. But from my experience if it is full you get 1 bee for about every 1/2" of tube, with the last 1/2" always being empty. So in a 6" tube if full you should have 11 bees give or take a couple.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    3,782

    Default Re: how many bees in a tube?

    Last year I had 4 or 5 in a tube. I had more than a couple of tubes that were only half full though. Didn't find out about them until I tore the unit apart to clean the cocoons.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Dexter, Michigan
    Posts
    46

    Default Re: how many bees in a tube?

    Cool, thanks for the replies : - )

    I now have 4 mudded over tubes and about 4 to 6 bees coming and going while I'm on the deck (garden).

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Bucksport, Maine
    Posts
    177

    Default Re: how many bees in a tube?

    My experience is an average of 3 females and 4 males per 6 inch tube. Now if you go slightly smaller say 5/16 inch you will get smaller bees and more per tube. Another way to vary tube size is with the number of wraps of paper you use. I think the tubes with the extra space not filled are when momma is about to expire and seals the tube before she goes feet in the air.
    Dave - PM me if you are interested in natural beekeeping in Hancock County Maine.
    http://www.davesbees.com

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