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BS: solitary bee

keberoxu 16 May 17 - 04:05 PM
Donuel 16 May 17 - 04:25 PM
Senoufou 16 May 17 - 04:42 PM
Senoufou 16 May 17 - 04:48 PM
Jon Freeman 16 May 17 - 05:59 PM
FreddyHeadey 16 May 17 - 06:15 PM
FreddyHeadey 16 May 17 - 07:00 PM
JennieG 17 May 17 - 02:02 AM
Donuel 17 May 17 - 07:14 AM
Senoufou 17 May 17 - 01:41 PM
Donuel 17 May 17 - 07:11 PM
keberoxu 17 May 17 - 07:16 PM
Senoufou 18 May 17 - 03:25 AM
robomatic 18 May 17 - 11:23 AM
JennieG 18 May 17 - 04:51 PM
Senoufou 18 May 17 - 06:20 PM
olddude 18 May 17 - 08:07 PM
keberoxu 18 May 17 - 08:29 PM
Jos 19 May 17 - 05:19 AM
leeneia 19 May 17 - 12:09 PM
leeneia 19 May 17 - 12:13 PM
Senoufou 19 May 17 - 12:43 PM
Jim Carroll 20 May 17 - 09:05 AM
Senoufou 20 May 17 - 01:24 PM
keberoxu 20 May 17 - 02:14 PM
Senoufou 20 May 17 - 04:13 PM
Jos 21 May 17 - 04:12 AM
Senoufou 21 May 17 - 06:55 AM
Donuel 21 May 17 - 08:05 AM
keberoxu 21 May 17 - 03:04 PM
Jon Freeman 21 May 17 - 03:17 PM
keberoxu 21 May 17 - 04:27 PM
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Subject: species of pollinating bees
From: keberoxu
Date: 16 May 17 - 04:05 PM

This is news to me. I have always heard of honeybees in colonies and hives. Of course I have observed "dumpster bees" and other flying things.

But in a catalog I was surprised to see a wooden apiary, built of cedar, for diverse species of solitary bees, recommended by the Royal Horticultural Society. This from a USA catalog by the way.

So for the first time I am hearing of:
the leafcutter bee,
and
the Red Mason bee.

They have names like "osmia rufa" and "megachile rotundata".
They prefer holes and cavities for nesting.
They do not swarm. They rarely sting, although some have stingers.

They pollinate and fertilize flowers and gardens.

Who out there already knows of these bees?


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Donuel
Date: 16 May 17 - 04:25 PM

We used to have hives and won the NYS Prize.
Now all I have are Cicada killers. They also will not sting people.
But if you are a locus, you are a goner.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Senoufou
Date: 16 May 17 - 04:42 PM

There are about 250 species of solitary bees in UK. They do have funny names, such as Hairy Footed Flower Bee, Wool Carder Bee, Mining Bee, Sweat Bee (!) Yellow Faced Bee, Mason Bee for example.
(I'm a member of the Norfolk Wildlife Trust and encouraging bees is one of their aims)

Apparently. 90% of our British bees are solitary.

I buy lots of packets of seeds of bee- and butterfly-loving annual flowers, and get lots of different nectar and pollen-seeking insects.

Most of our neighbours and I have little bee 'houses' of hollow sticks covered in a sloping roof, where solitary bees can overwinter in safety beside a south-facing wall.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Senoufou
Date: 16 May 17 - 04:48 PM

By the way, Mason Bees here in Norfolk can be a bit of a nuisance as they exploit crevices in between our soft red Norfolk brick walls of houses, and cause some damage to the mortar and even the bricks themselves. One can buy a 'Mason Bee brick' to insert, which has bee-sized holes to encourage them to keep off the masonry!


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 16 May 17 - 05:59 PM

Well I known of solitary bees or quite a while but that's about as far as it goes. We did look up leaf cutter bees last year as Pip/mum spent a while observing one while she was gardening. It dragged the bits of leaf it cut into a hole in the gate to the field.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: FreddyHeadey
Date: 16 May 17 - 06:15 PM

Yes.
But my dad kept honey bees so he was always showing us odd things like that.
I should have taken more notice.

There is one, or maybe it is a type of wasp, which catches fly and drags it backwards in to its burrow. I spent ages watching a few the other year. Not catching the fly but the dragging into the burrow.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: FreddyHeadey
Date: 16 May 17 - 07:00 PM

Video about mason bees

https://youtu.be/V8vAQ1B5Zj4


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: JennieG
Date: 17 May 17 - 02:02 AM

According to this , Oz has over 1500 species of native bees. Some make honey while others are just pollinators. A few years ago we had blue banded bees visiting - they were gorgeous little fellers with bright neon blue stripes on their bums.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Donuel
Date: 17 May 17 - 07:14 AM

solitary Cicada killers live in a hole in the ground they dig themselves. They are gentle GIANTS. They will never harm a human.
They will scare you by flying close but that is it. They fight among themselves over territory.

What has killed 90% of all our American bees are the niconoid systemic pesticides and herbicides. France banned them all. The US will kill our bee for another 4 years before they phase them out due to poison company profit motives and legislation.

We have to truck bees to fields to pollinate farms. It is a very dire situation that can not wait for a better solution.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Senoufou
Date: 17 May 17 - 01:41 PM

Hahaha Jennie, I love the sound of those blue-banded bees! Wish we had some of those!

Oilseed rape is grown extensively here in East Anglia, and since three types of neonicotinoids were banned here in 2013, (and in all EU countries) their adverse effect on bees has been reduced. They're now considering banning all of these insecticides, which annoys the farmers but not the nature conservationists!

This year around our village, oilseed rape seems to be crop-of-the-year, and the fields are absolutely humming with bees of all kinds.
The bright yellow rape has a lovely smell, but my husband is crippled with his hayfever until the flowers die off. The stuff also provokes migraines in some people.

A chap in our village has lots of beehives, and has won prizes for his honey at the Royal Norfolk Show.

Husband says W African bees are absolutely vicious, aggressive and deadly, and if they attack in a swarm you'll be stung mercilessly and would probably die. He needed persuading when he first came to UK that our bees are really quite nice chaps!


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Donuel
Date: 17 May 17 - 07:11 PM

Senofou is the Ivory Coast doing better? Last I heard there is a civil war and the price collapsed for chocolate, probably due to Wall St. skullduggery.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: keberoxu
Date: 17 May 17 - 07:16 PM

Chiming in with Donuel:

the last I heard of those trucks taking the bees from farm to farm,
the bees were very grouchy about it.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Senoufou
Date: 18 May 17 - 03:25 AM

Donuel, they have had a period of calm after Ouattara came to power and Gbagbo was finally ousted. Ouattara stupidly promised the Army huge sums of money to protect him and the country from further trouble. But he hasn't paid up, so now the Military are going about firing rifles all over Abidjan, and my husband's worried about his family (again!) He was there 2 weeks ago for his father's funeral, and there's an atmosphere of tension already.
It goes in cycles it seems to me. Calm for a year or two, then another uprising.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: robomatic
Date: 18 May 17 - 11:23 AM

How about the solitary half-bee (meaning Eric) ?
;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: JennieG
Date: 18 May 17 - 04:51 PM

How could we forget Eric!


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Senoufou
Date: 18 May 17 - 06:20 PM

Anyone else old enough to remember Arthur Askey's 'Bee Song'? It was recorded in 1938, but was played quite a bit on Uncle Mac's Children's Favourites on the radio in the early fifties.

("Bzzz bzzz honey bee! Honey bee!
Bzzz if you like but DON'T sting me!")


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: olddude
Date: 18 May 17 - 08:07 PM

Me, I have wasps, I have under my deck, paper wasp in the tree, and that dangling legged bastard that nailed me while I was mowing. I am declaring war on them


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: keberoxu
Date: 18 May 17 - 08:29 PM

Is this Eric the Viking?
Is he still amongst us Mudcatters?


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Jos
Date: 19 May 17 - 05:19 AM

Plenty of solitary bees in the bank of sandy soil near my house. They have their individual burrows but all emerge together when the weather suits them. The only problem is the ignorant children who stamp on them as they emerge.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: leeneia
Date: 19 May 17 - 12:09 PM

Have you seen that happening, Jos?


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: leeneia
Date: 19 May 17 - 12:13 PM

The so-called organic food industry uses pesticides derived from plants, but unfortunately said pesticides hurt all insects, beneficial or not.

I have read that they also use copper compounds (copper being natural). Copper never degrades of course, but remains copper, a toxic metal.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Senoufou
Date: 19 May 17 - 12:43 PM

Cor! If I caught the little blighters doing that, I'd stamp on them and give them what for! (Adopts extremely stern Teacher Face)


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 20 May 17 - 09:05 AM

There's a story of a Morningside (Edinburgh) lady who kept a bed and breakfast and had a reputation of being very mean.
One morning, she presented her guest with a breakfast consisting of just toast and margarine, so, being somewhat timid, he asked hesitantly, "Do you think I might have a little honey with my toast?"
She hesitated for some time, then eventually went away and after a time brought back a tiny blob of honey on a plate
The guest looked at it for a minute and eventually said, "I see you keep a bee"
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Senoufou
Date: 20 May 17 - 01:24 PM

Hahaha Jim! I rented a room in Merchiston, Edinburgh (quite near Morningside) for a few years, and cleaned for one or two 'Morningside ladies'. Their houses were posh (and so were they) but inside it was obvious they were merely 'keeping up appearances' as they seemed to have little in the way of possessions. They were indeed a bit mean. The phrase 'Pride and Poverty' was frequently used with regard to them.

Their accent used to make me giggle uncontrollably. Very like that of Miss Jean Brodie ("Ai em in mai praim.") And their fairly modest sitting rooms were always referred to as 'The Drrrawing Rrrrroom'.

Jenners (posh store in Edinburgh city centre) had a tea-room which was always awash with these ladies, wearing heather-mixture suits, tea-cup in hand and pinkie finger extended elegantly..


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: keberoxu
Date: 20 May 17 - 02:14 PM

In the USA, we have azaleas, rhododendrons, and tomatoes , and what do these have in common?

Honeybees cannot pollinate or fertilize them.
Honeybees, the Internet agrees, are European imports anyway.

For those plants you want either bumblebees or more specialized solitary bees.
Regarding the azaleas and rhododendrons in particular,
the pollinating insect has to know exactly how to shake the anthers.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Senoufou
Date: 20 May 17 - 04:13 PM

The fields and fields of oilseed rape round our village have now finished flowering and are no longer that violent yellow colour. My husband has stopped sneezing and snuffling.
But I'm worried for the bees and butterflies because the weather has turned cold and very wet, and the poor things cant find enough pollen to keep them going.
keberoxu, that's extremely interesting about pollinators. We kill off these insects at our peril. They're all part of the ecosystem and without them we'd have to go round with tiny paintbrushes pollinating all the crops ourselves (like exotic orchid growers!)


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Jos
Date: 21 May 17 - 04:12 AM

When I spoke to the children it turned out they thought that bee stings could be fatal. They were being very "brave" killing the bees ...


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:55 AM

Children do things like that, and it's only because they haven't been educated about wildlife.
Last year we went to see the gorgeous bluebells in a wood not far from our village. They were exquisite, stretching in a purple haze under the trees. But some children were running around trampling them down and grinding their shoes into the flowers. They didn't seem to have any adults with them.
I had a word... (Stern Teacher Face again!)


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Donuel
Date: 21 May 17 - 08:05 AM

French Bees can make multi colored honey due to nearby perfume farms but in the northeast near an M&M candy shell factory, bees make bright artificial blue green and yellow honey - from eating candy.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: keberoxu
Date: 21 May 17 - 03:04 PM

Obviously the subject of Biology was absent from my studies, lo, those many years ago. Otherwise,

it would not be news to me -- which it is, from looking up solitary bees --
that all bees evolved from, of all things, the wasp.

That is a sobering consideration.
Wasps are carnivorous and predatory.
Bees -- even the stinging, swarming, defensive ones --
prefer to get their nourishment from
the (once abundant) forms of plant life.

Maybe humans could learn from their example.


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 21 May 17 - 03:17 PM

What about cuckoo bees?


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Subject: RE: BS: solitary bee
From: keberoxu
Date: 21 May 17 - 04:27 PM

I fear there are a few humans too many
who have learned from the example of cuckoo bees.


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