In my last post I explained how I had to go out to my field sites and pick up all my bee nests/sticks. Goodbear brought up a good question that I thought would be good to explain to everyone. Not just those who check back on the comments. So here was goodbears question, “were any of your sticks missing or damaged while they were out? how did you choose where to put them?” I read this comment and thought, “why didn’t I think about that?” So now, I have to tell you all the answer.
For the first question…it is a yes. A handful of sticks were damaged or missing. One of my sites was notorious for MIA sticks. It was frustrating people. You are out there one week and all your sticks are accounted for. The next week, your missing 20! Just at one site. The culprit…
They are cute as hell, but they are also thieves. I would find some of my sticks stashed near or in their burrows. Only one of my sites gave me this much trouble. It was good I was out in the field early in the morning. There was no one around to hear me cursing the squirrels. And that is one of my Cheez-It crackers it is eating.
As for the second part of goodbears question…I had to take the buckets O’ sticks home because I had to cover them within a week after collection so nothing escapes. here is a picture of one of the sticks with it’s niftey metal cover.
Yes people. That is duct tape on the top. That tape works wonders. The point of the mesh is so that the baby bees can breath and still be caught when they emerge.
Here are a few of the sticks that were used or occupied by bees.
I have several of these buckets full of bee sticks. Think of how many baby bees there are here. Its like guessing how many jelly beans are in the jar.
After covering the sticks I put them in a shed in my backyard. I want to leave them in an environment that is as close to the outdoors as possible. I can’t leave them out in the open because I don’t want my dogs to eat them. I can’t leave them in the front yard because I don’t want them to get stolen. And I don’t want to put them in the lab because the temperature inside the lab is cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. The baby bees will be confused as to what season it is. I am trying my hardest not to kill or stress them.
Sp there you have it. There is nowhere to store the sticks, but in my shed. For now I am a bee nanny. The keeper of these bees.