Mason Bee Keeping


You live in zone 3, I’d say they’re likely to freeze to death most years

Here in zone 5/6, I used to keep them outside some years, but things like squirrels and birds get them

You don’t HAVE to do anything like clean them, it’s not essential


I went out to check my hatching bees, and I saw a nasty damnrobin lurking around to catch them


Something is REALLY getting into the bees!


I checked my bees and don’t see any flying around. Many of the cacoons have hatched open but no sign of life. Either they are off foraging, have been eaten by birds, or skipped town to find better digs. There is plenty of blooms around so not sure what’s up. Could have just wasted some serious cash.


If it’s not sunny and warm, they hide out


I’ll keep my eye out for them


They don’t move super far-100 yards, like a squirrel. I think Speedster1 has it down: Keep flowers pollinating early so they have something to stay and eat. I do nothing to my mason bees and they expand. I’m in zone 8 and I have lots of early and late flowers.
John S


Is this a Mason Bee? Sorry about the low quality picture. The bee was going from one flower to the other. I almost thought it was a large fly.


I usually have a lot of mason bees this time of year, working my lemon tree and the other blossoms in the yard. Not so much this year. I can hear them in the tree, but I do not see too many of them. I’ll have to put up some habitat for them for next year.


That’s hard to see, but it looks more waspy to me, and a mason bee has no yellow, as well as being more blocky-shaped


I just saw my first Mason bee this spring. It’s sunny outside but still chilly. This guy was facing the sun to collect a little warmth. Hope that’s just a male and not a nesting female. That is not an ideal location. I’m pretty sure it’s a male since it has the white nose


Looks larger - female size


That is such a cool picture, he looks like he is surveying his domain. I can’t wait to put mine out.


I read where only the males have the white face.


Is this guy/gal a mason bee? Lots of bees on my plums today, but no honeybees that I saw.


Looks like one to me. Can’t tell if it’s a boy or a girl though.


I’m still trying to decide exactly what a mason bee looks like so please keep posting pictures. The carpenter bee is another matter as he commands attention.


I have been checking my mason bee house daily but none have shown up.


Ours look like a house fly but just a bit longer. If you see them in the light, you can see a flash of blue, hence blue orchard mason bees.


Here is another view of the putative mason bee. Not sure if it is the same one or not.