How's your bee population?

claudia_sandgrower(SC Zone 8)April 5, 2009

Hello all! I thought I'd throw out a general question about bees in your areas... are you seeing fewer, more or not noticing any changes?

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zigzag

Same old, same old ...... heavy flight population of really big bees as the yard springs to life! I'm not sure what variety they are, but they are BIG and very busy harvesting whatever from the early blooming plants.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2009 at 6:17PM
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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

They certainly do love flowering trees: the yoshinos and hollies are covered.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2009 at 7:43PM
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nannerbelle(8A)

Seems to be good as usual here. I've seen both honey, and big bumblebees. And of course the usual wasps hunting a place to nest. I've got some native vine growing out in the fields that is trumpet shaped small to medium flowers, and they are all over it. It isn't honeysuckle, but they love it. I need to look it up, I seem to have a good bit of it this year and haven't noticed it before.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2009 at 8:41PM
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claudia_sandgrower(SC Zone 8)

I'm seeing similar numbers here. They love the wisteria (which I actually PLANTED 7 - 8 years ago, in spite of what everyone told me... siighhh... I never did listen well!) and the azaleas. They seemed to show up a little later than last year, though, even though the wisteria is thicker than ever!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2009 at 8:48PM
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claudia_sandgrower(SC Zone 8)

And nannerbelle - I sure do hope your vines aren't giving you the same grief that blasted honeysuckle gives me... I'm forever pulling it out of my azaleas! (Had to dig one completely up and put it on top of the "to be burned" pile!)

    Bookmark   April 5, 2009 at 9:59PM
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nannerbelle(8A)

Thankfully, no they aren't Claudia. They are way off in the field. but I'm concerned about a couple of small hardwood trees that they seem to like so I guess I'll be doing some snipping on them.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 8:33AM
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torajima

Zigzag, do they look like HUGE carpenter bees? If so, they're Giant Resin Bees. Originally from Asia, they first appeared in the Carolinas a few years ago (no one is sure how they got here).

I have tons of them in my yard.... fortunately, they are quite docile.

Honeybees are a rare visitor (I did see 3 this weekend), but between the Resin Bees, Carpenter Bees, Metallic Bees, and the occasional Bumblebee, I guess my bee population is pretty healthy.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 9:26AM
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spazzycat_1

Looking healthy and about the same. We tend to get more honey bees when the weather's cool and wasps, bumbles, carpenter, yellow jackets, etc when it's warm. Frankly, I could do without the yellow jackets. Last summer, I was attacked twice by a yellow jacket's nest. Those suckers pack a wallop.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 10:36AM
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claudia_sandgrower(SC Zone 8)

We have the same problem with the yellow jackets, spazzycat. No one's been stung, but they're aggressive little suckers. Lots of wasps, too. I know they have their place in the cycle of life but I HATE those things... one of the few "bugs" that I'm honestly afraid of!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 4:51PM
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rosebush(z7 NC)

Both kinds here, honey and big, black fuzzy ones.

Claudia, that makes two of us, I'm deathly afraid of wasps! Any other critters don't phase me, but I avoid wasps like the plague!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 4:56PM
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patskywriter

there are plenty of bees enjoying the clover on my "lawn" (for lack of a better word). there's a big fat one that threatens me every time i come out the back door. he somehow thinks that this is his home, and i've tried to tell him otherwise ...

    Bookmark   April 7, 2009 at 9:53PM
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dottie_in_charlotte(z7-8 NC)

Glad to learn about the resin bees and that, unlike carpenter bees, they do not cause damage to homes by chewing out the wood to make nest tunnels but use existing tunnels of carpenter bees.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 8:49AM
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ncdirtdigger(7b)

I have a good population of Italian honeybees this year. My neighbor and I took a beekeeping class this winter and are now the proud owners of two hives. They are really interesting creatures. I also have the usual amounts of bumblebees. They are drawn to the blueberry bushes.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2009 at 5:49PM
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jay_7bsc(8a)

Right now, our wisteria is simply humming with honeybees. A little earlier, honeybees and bumblebees covered the Yoshino cherry and crabapple blossoms. They're also visiting our azaleas, in company with the swallowtail butterflies.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2009 at 3:06PM
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dottie_in_charlotte(z7-8 NC)

I saw a few stray honeybees last month onthefly but I see nothing on the holly shrubs in full bloom (they smell great)..the test will be in a few months when the vitex are in full bloom. Then I will be able to assess the honeybee population compared to previous years. Two years of extreme drought has probably had a bad effect on them.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2009 at 10:11AM
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dyhgarden(7b)

Our oakleaf hollies are being swarmed by honeybees! I've been out in the garden a lot and have had several of the bees land on me, but no stinging from them.

Cameron

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 9:35PM
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pfmastin(8 N. Carolina)

I'm seeing a good number of honeybees this year...more than in the past few.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 8:08AM
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