carrie
 
Reply Tue 21 Apr, 2009 12:58 pm
Has anyone managed to attract any bees to one of those bee boxes you can buy in the garden centre? I bought one for my grandad and he has had no luck.
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Apr, 2009 02:11 pm
@carrie,
I never heard of a bee box, but maybe the design is right and the location is wrong.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Apr, 2009 02:23 pm
@carrie,
You are talking about what is called a "Skep",nd Ive really never seen bees become attracted to them. Wasps maybe. When I used to raise bees, we always chased after swarms that lit in trees. Wed try to calm them down and, fully suited in the head and arms, go there after dark and take the queen and several big handsfull of bees and put them in a prep[ared hive with 2 superstructures that have the comb foundations already set in the racks. Then let the other bees have free access to come down and settle in. Ive never had anyone claim that they ere able to attract a swarm in to a skep or "super" frame hive box.
0 Replies
 
carrie
 
  2  
Reply Tue 21 Apr, 2009 03:29 pm
As I thought, I wondered why on earth they would go in there. Apparently they are supposed to be like a 'stop gap' for the bees. I wonder if they would work if right next to the right flowers...
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Tue 21 Apr, 2009 04:37 pm
@carrie,
Bee skeps look like this. Is this what you mean? These are a very old technology and the only skeps in use any more are at places like Williamsburg or the Shaker Villages   http://us.st12.yimg.com/us.st.yimg.com/I/yhst-77070476210671_2051_6836571
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Tue 21 Apr, 2009 04:58 pm
@farmerman,
OOPS youre in UK, I guess you have several "reenactment villages" where theyve got skeps in use.
0 Replies
 
carrie
 
  2  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 02:55 am
That isn't a bee box - It's weird, it's like a hollow box, with no ends, and loads of tubes of what I can only think are bamboo running through it, creating tunnels for the insects to go in.
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 04:24 am
@carrie,
I see now what youre talking about. Several species of pollinatores are solitary bees , (like a Mason bee or a Carpenter bee). Ive never tried to attract them since weve got plenty of the honey bee pollinators from my own 2 hives . Ive seen the theory of bee boxes like those of which you speak.
One takes a cube of wood (a 4X4 ) and then drills lots of holes at least 3" deep and 1/4" in diameter in the wood. The ones Ive seen on the web are just pepperedwith holes on one side. This is then posted near the garden or nailed to a post. The theory is that it will attract "Solitary" bee species. In the US , they are apparently popular in desert regions. One of our members, a dyslectic man from New Mexico, has a lot of gardening experience in the desert. Maybe he knows something about bee boxes.
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  0  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 09:44 am
@farmerman,
You are a dreamer. Dys don't know nothin.

One of my favorite books is Bumblebee Economics. I think you would enjoy it.

BBB

Bumblebee Economics: Revised edition (Paperback)
by Bernd Heinrich (Author)

Editorial Reviews

"At the colony level, the pollen and sugar are the resources used to produce the machinery - combs and new workers - that will in turn use similar resources to produce drones and new queens, the factory's product." Thus Heinrich (Entomology, Berkeley) considers the bumblebee in terms of energy economics. The book, which grew from a 1976 sabbatical study at Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology - Edward O. Wilson's bailiwick - details how the bumblebee's behavioral and physiological means of thermoregulation, which is necessary for flight and incubation, optimize energy returns per units of time and energy spent in foraging for the sugar/fuel - and how bees and flowers have coevolved according to the bees' goal of reaping maximum rewards and the flowers' of supplying the least amount of food necessary to attract pollinators. Heinrich's terminology conforms to his theme, as he calculates commuting costs and benefits and food-to-baby conversion ratios; explores foraging strategy in terms of individual initiative and competition; and compares the bees' physiological system to that of an internal combustion engine (specifically, the Lincoln Continental) and hive economy to a cottage industry system in the Adam Smith mode. (The honeybee colony, in contrast, is more like a big corporation.) Though critics of the sociobiology approach might well find such analogies unfruitful, it is impossible not to be impressed with the imagination and rigor with which Heinrich applies his considerable knowledge of the bumblebee to his energy-economics framework. (Kirkus Reviews) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

This is a remarkable and rewarding book, complementary to, yet in some respects going far beyond, its predecessors. It is highly recommended.
--Caryl P. Haskins (New York Times Book Review 20041218)

Extraordinary...the implications of work such as Heinrich's seem to me more resonant than the promise of a rich harvest of new research.
--Fred Hapgood (Harper's Magazine )

A magnificent book that combines the best of both writing and science...Heinrich has performed a masterful job of sharing his personal research efforts and those of others in his field. He has written an extremely interesting book and in the process has shown how one kind of organism can be used as a model to investigate behavior, physiology, ecology and evolution. Bumblebee Economics should serve as a model for good scientific writing.
--Matthew M. Douglas (Quarterly Review of Biology )

Heinrich is the author of several notable books about nature. This one, first published in 1979, is a classic, a fascinating, readable study of life as organized (sort of) by a most endearing little creature. A new preface summarizes findings of the last quarter-century. A splendid work. (Globe and Mail )
0 Replies
 
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  0  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 10:03 am
Did Noah keep his bees in archives?

BBB
0 Replies
 
dyslexia
 
  0  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 12:36 pm
obviously i offer no advice, I don'' know nuthin'
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  0  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 05:10 pm
Here's some videos that will be helpful to you:

http://www.expertvillage.com/video/113906_beekeeping-starting-beehive.htm


farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 05:26 pm
@Butrflynet,
beehives and bee "boxes" are two totally different things. I have beehives (and I must say that in that video , that is one of the skankiest hive complex Ive ever seen. They oughta be ashamed to make a video of those shabby hives), and beehives are for colonial living bees. What we are referring to in this thread is a beebox for solitrary bees (species of bees that do pollinating but are solitary not colony dwellers). The mason bee, the carpemnter bee, the ground "bee" are three types
Butrflynet
 
  0  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 05:27 pm
@farmerman,
okie doke.
0 Replies
 
dyslexia
 
  3  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 06:00 pm
Gardeners looking for non-stinging alternatives to defensive honey bee colonies as pollinators need to mount bee boxes. Native desert bees are solitary rather than social, and nest in holes in the ground or within dead wood of Agave or Yucca stalks, tree trunks, branches or twigs. Carpenter bees drill their own nest cells but other desert bees will use artificial wooden nesting materials called bee boxes. Bee boxes consist of blocks of wood drilled with holes of various diameters to attract a diversity of native bees. Bee boxes attached to shady sites on trees or under the eaves of buildings result in female nesting bees quickly finding and using the new holey bee real estate.

As a gardener unwilling to hand pollinate squash, cucumbers, gourds and many other garden plants, a bee box offers a simple solution. A bee box is simple to build. Some scrap, untreated wood, a few nails or screws, a drill and a few different size drill bits is all it takes. The following instructions allow you to add bees to your environment with little effort and wonderful results.
I don't know nuthin' but these folks seem to;
http://tucsonbotanical.org/gardening/building-a-bee-box/
0 Replies
 
dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Apr, 2009 06:06 pm
The laws of aerodynamics prove that the bumblebee should be incapable of flight, as it does not have the capacity in terms of wing size or beat per second to achieve flight, however the bumblebee does not know this so it flies?
------------------------------------------------

That was a joke, by an aerodynamicist who really meant "we haven't worked out how they fly", Some 20 years later, it has now been worked out. It is complex, using sophisticated vortex control and sophisticated materials, but in fact it is now going the other way: people are building mechanical insects based on the understanding of how they fly.
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Apr, 2009 11:54 am
@dyslexia,
OK, but you still don't know nothin.

BBB
0 Replies
 
carrie
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Apr, 2009 04:02 pm
Thanks all, very enlightening - I will pass on to my grandad.

Do you know if there are any solitary bee sepcies in the UK who would use it?
0 Replies
 
 

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