mining bee

Mining bee's, are they aggressive? 

Help! We’ve got wasps all over our garden, can you help us? 
This is the message I’m constantly getting at the moment because its that time of year when we see the emergence of the ground bee or mining bee depending on what you want to call them.  
These fluffy little bees use their camouflage to throw off any potential predators and this also trick’s us into thinking that they’re wasps, when in fact, they’re harmless and defenceless solitary bee’s that really are important pollinators. 
lots of mining bees
So what’s happening in the video? 
We shot this footage at a garden in Woodley where the ground has been left relatively undisturbed for a couple of years, and being quite sandy, as well as free draining plus southerly facing, its become the absolute ideal site for mining bee’s to come to and lay their eggs in. 
All summer long Mrs Bee has been busy excavating burrows, laying eggs inside and packing a mixture of pollen and nectar for her young grubs to eat when they hatch out, her lifecycle has now come to an end and the future is all centred around this small piece of ground. 
The bee grubs have been fed on a diet of pollen and nectar – bee bread, and they have gone through the pupation cycle to emerge as adult bee’s, of which, the male bee’s will emerge first and they dart across the surface of the soil looking for the newly emerging females.  
What happens then, is a frantic scramble to mate as these males only have a short lifespan of just a few weeks; the females will go onto eat as much nectar as they can because they will return to the earth to hibernate through the winter months. 
Are ground bee’s dangerous? 
These ground bee’s are completely safe, they can be intimidating due to the sheer number of bee’s as they will pick the same area as others to nest in, because they don’t have a colony to protect like wasps and their cousins the bumblebee, and they don’t have food stores to safeguard like honeybee’s, they have evolved without a stinger or venom. 
In truth, there are a few species of ground bee’s that still have a stinger but they don’t produce any venom, so they pose no threat to us. I can easily see how people find their presence alarming, but they are totally harmless, and you’ve got to give it to the bee’s, its a wonderful spectacle and something you should enjoy watching. 
Please don’t call out pest control, no company should treat these and the purpose of this blog is to try and safeguard an innocent and harmless insect and save you money.  
Bee – lieve me, they are harmless. 
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