2012 Mason Bee Update
The weather has been up and down over the past week with temps of up to 70 plus I've seen daffodills popping up in protected area. What this meant was that I decided to strip out my trap blocks and get them into the reefer for the last couple of weeks.
My trap blocks have 6" parchment paper tubes for a total of 165 tubes. They yielded ~1081 cocoons that look viable. i did not candle any of them.
I set out , late in the season around Mid May, a grooved board trap. It only partially filled but It yielded 245 cocoons. However, I'm not sure they are all mason bees.Some of the tubes had 17+ cocoons and they all looked small and just looked different, but I can't point to anything specific.
I will have two of the grooved board traps for this season. I am going to keep the cocoons I pulled from it in a seperate hatch box just to see if the hatch rate is any different. Unloading it was easier than the tubes but I worry that sliding a tool underneath them might damage them. Might need to look into what sort of tool other people use.
Anyway, here is a link to some photos of my traps and the yields.