Meet the Mason Bee!
As Honeybees Die: New Miracle Bee Solving World Food Crisis
…Viral Buzz — December 17, 2014 by Dave Hunter…
World Food Production Drops as the Honeybee Population Continues To Disappear: Until This Little Miracle Showed Up!
They’ve been ignored for thousands of years as the honeybee buzzed around getting all the credit. Now, as the honeybee population drops . . . this obscure little miracle has stepped up to save the humans race. That might sound a bit dramatic, but according to the USDA/ARS: If high honey bee losses continue, it could threaten the bee pollination industry which provides much of our food. Welcome Homo-Sapiens new best friend, the Mason Bee:
“These gentle bees rarely sting, they don’t make honey, but they sure can pollinate!”
The last few years of honey bee loses continue to raise worldwide concern. In the latest USDA 2013-2014 winter honey bee loss report the recent decline average is close to 30%. Honey bees have had serious declines for the past decade, but the steady high decline in recent years is cause for alarm. ALL of our orchards rely upon the ONE honey bee. The problem isn’t just a US issue; in China where the bee population has been decimated and labor is cheap, workers are now hired to pollinate . . .
Whether it is pesticides, pollution or domestication that is killing the honeybee, no one is quite sure. What experts are sure about is that the honey bee is under attack by myriads of deadly challenges with more coming on each year.
“We’re doing something wrong with the honey bee.”
According to the USDA, about one mouthful in three in our food directly or indirectly comes from honey bee pollination. These are the foods that give our diet diversity, flavor, and nutrition. Not only will our food become increasingly bland, there will be less, and less food to go around.
Honey bees make honey, Mason bees make food
A honey bee’s job is to gather as much pollen and nectar as possible to create honey. They need this honey for their colony to survive through the winter. Honey bees are extremely efficient at gathering as much pollen as possible on their hind legs. They get the pollen sticky so that little pollen falls off as they gather for their hive.
Enter The Super-pollinating Mason Bee
Mason bees are a completely different bee. They are solitary and only live for about 6 weeks. No need for honey! Spring mason bees pollinate between cherry and blueberry seasons. They are horrible at gathering pollen. Female bees carry the pollen on their undersides and mash as much pollen as possible into their hairs before taking off for the next flower. Pollen falls off everywhere. Virtually every flower they land on is pollinated.
Although lesser known, mason bees are an amazing pollination machine. There are multiple species of this solitary, hole-nesting bee across the world.
European Honey bee – U.S. Mason Bee
Science proved in the 1980’s that when mason bees were used in orchards, farmers increase the yield of their crop. Cherries can increase by 200-300 percent, almonds by less. Studies have been replicated in the US, Europe, and Asia for increased production of apples, pears, kiwi, peaches, and many other fruits and nuts which show amazing results.
These gentle mason bees exist in backyards and meadows worldwide. You might have them at your home, but until today, they have gone unnoticed. Gardeners are now using mason bees to gain more fruits and summer vegetables.