The Amazing Pollinator
Mason Bees are early spring pollinators that emerge when temperatures are 50° F (10° C) or warmer over three to four consecutive days.
Mason Bees are valuable pollinators of fruit and nut trees, some berries, and a few early spring flowers. They also like maple trees. A single Mason Bee will visit between 1,600 to 2,400 blossoms daily, and pollinate over 90% of them. A female visits an average of 75 flowers per foraging trip.
Females determine whether to lay male or female eggs. A female lays three or four male eggs for every two females. Males emerge first, followed by females a couple of days later. Females mate on the day they emerge and males die a few days after.
Fifteen to thirty-five trips are needed to collect sufficient nectar and pollen to feed each larva. Each female lays an average of an egg per day, or 34 to 36 eggs during her short life span.
Each nesting condo can have up to 16 eggs. A mud wall separates each egg and its food supply. Ten trips are usually needed to construct each mud wall.
Mason Bees are not destructive insects. They only use holes found in nature or provided by man.
Mason Bees forage in a limited radius of 100 yards or the length of a football field.
Mason bees are often confused with house flies, as they look like a blue house fly. Listen and you will be able to determine which is a fly or a bee. House flies make a humming sound, while Mason Bees make a buzzing sound.
Mason Bees are solitary, gentle, non-aggressive pollinators. Only the female stings when she faces serious danger. Her sting is similar to a mosquito bite. People of all ages are safe around these super pollinators.
The Mason Bees got their name because they are working with mud. They are builders.
They need mud to plug their nesting block after each egg the Mason Bee lays.
Female bees are usually larger than the male bees.
Mason Bees are a solitary bee, which means she works independently.
They do not produce honey.
Mason Bees are spring pollinator and will die in approximately 10 to 12 weeks.
If you are allergic to honey bees then Mason Bees are a great alternative, you can watch them work without fear of being stung.
Mason Bees provide hours of enjoyment observing their nesting habits and valuable pollination efforts.