Bee houses, blocks, tubes, liners, emergence tubes, cleaning tools, and cocoons are normally available at the Linn Co. Extension Office in Tangent. However, the office is closed until further notice, due to current guidelines on dealing with Covid-19.
But Ranee is here to save the day!
"I live in Southwest Albany. I also have bee supplies and cocoons at my house. You can contact me via e-mail if you want to arrange a pick up at my house instead of going to the Linn Extension Office. We can practice the 6 foot rule and I will wash my hands before I touch the supplies. I usually answer e-mail within a day or two. Bring cash or a check to LCMGA."
Having lots of holes available in one spot increases pests. Keep the amount of nesting holes low to slow the spread of pest. Use blocks with 50 or less holes. Don’t add a lot of extra tubes and liners. Add more house locations instead. Place additional house locations at least six feet apart. Providing less holes per location is better.
This is just a reminder about how to use blocks vs tubes with liners. NOTE: You do NOT put liners in the block holes.
Be sure to tape on a back to provide a dark hole.
Advantage of Blocks: Can take apart for easier cleaning. Harvesting cocoons is much faster. Basically, this makes it easier for us.
Disadvantage of Blocks: Holes close together can cause pests to spread faster.
Tubes With Liners
Advantage of Tubes with Liners: Bees tend prefer them over blocks. (They do like stems, teasel and reeds as well).
Disadvantage of Tubes with Liners: Harvesting cocoons takes much longer. The cardboard tube needs to be replaced every 3-4 years. They often get wet over time and then also have mold issues. “Used” liners need to be replaced every year. What is a used liner? If you see any evidence of a mud wall, the bee has “used” this liner. Another bee will not use it.
Using a combo of both blocks and tubes with liners is a good option.
NOTE: Bees use UV light to guide them, so don’t place blocks or tubes with liners in a very deep container, and don’t put the house very far under a porch.
For more information about good houses vs bad houses, go to our Bee Notes archive: June 26, 2019
A recent PowerPoint presentation on Mason Bees from this year's BeeVent is now available as well.
Thank you for supporting BOB (the blue orchard bee). Maybe we should call her Bobbie?
Weather Issues, or "Can I put my bees out?"
These posts are from Master Gardeners, as well as speakers we have had at various events concerning pollinators.