I have been raising mason bees for years which means I am always buying new nesting tubes. That gets a little expensive. But over the weekend I attended a workshop down at Oregon State University and learned how to make tubes for free; not only for mason bees but for many of our other native cavity nesting bees.
Oregon’s native bees are great pollinators and providing nesting sites can increase their populations and for many crops will result in better yields. In modern landscapes we tend to be neat and tidy which often results in the removal of nesting sites. Bee hotels are a way to keep a manicured yard while still providing nesting sites.
Mason bees are the poster child for these native bees and many homeowners and schools are raising them these days. There are many other solitary bees such as Continue reading “Make Your Own Native Bee Nesting Tubes For Free”
The Oregon Department of Agriculture has launched the Oregon Bee Project to help improve and ensure the health of 500-plus native species of bees that pollinate many of our crops. This program will include field research, public outreach and education, and the creation of an Oregon Bee Farm Certification to reward farmers who adopt bee-friendly practices.
They are looking for six flagship farms that already have suitable pollinator habitat. Part of the evaluation process is setting out traps to get an idea of what native bees are present on these farms. And to that end, Sarah Kincaid, entomologist with the ODA paid our farm a visit and put out three blue vane traps. These traps were developed for trapping beetles but Oregon State University researcher Dr. Sujaya Rao soon noticed that they were effective Continue reading “Oregon Bee Project Looks for Native Pollinators”