Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Mason Bee Life Cycle

I'd like to be able to say that I planned it, that from the beginning of this year my goal was to photograph the life cycle and behavior of Mason Bees. But I didn't, it just kinda happened. I did plan to photograph them, just didn't think I'd do as well as I did since their life spans are so short and the weather so unpredictable in the early spring. But I did manage to document them being born...

Hatching Female Mason Bee II

Hatching Female Mason Bee

...to starting a family...

Mating Red Mason Bees

...to nesting and nest building...

Protective Mom

Mason Bee Collecting Mud

Almost Finished II

...and I watched about twelve capped reeds of Mason Bees turn into over sixty in just two months. Next year I'm going to have a lot of bees! I even got lucky enough to photograph some Male Blue Mason bees on their birth day, a species that I hadn't seen in my yard before.

Newborn Blue Mason Bee I

If you want to know more about Mason Bees, and possible start raising them yourself, then head on over to Crown Bees. I'll leave you with this video I shot of Mason bees collecting mud for their nest building. I was right on top of them and not once did any of the ladies bother me -they really are quite docile and excellent pollinators!