Thursday, May 06, 2010

Help the Homeless Bumblebee

People in usual have a soft spot for the bumblebee - that little plump creature is forever fighting with its helter-skelter way of flying while it is humming so lovely - a symbol of a sunny day in the garden or a summer day out in the country.

When the bumblebee-queen wakes from her winter sleep, it is early spring. The bumblebee endures low temperatures better than the honeybee, but in many places the cultural landscape is a problem for the bumblebee. It has lost terrain because of corn crops, lesser and lesser windbreaks and almost no earth banks or stone fences , which means that the bumblebee has been declining during the last decades.

A garden owner is able to help the bumblebee to get started in the early spring by i.e. planting Goat willow, crocus, Christmas rose and early flowering heather, which is good food for the bumblebee in the early spring. Nest-places can be established by leaving part of a woodpile or a bundle of twigs - or maybe build a small stone fence in the garden. A nesting box for the tit with a hole of two centimeters diameter could be a fine home for the bumble bee.

Source: Natur og Miljø, Nr. 1 March 2010, article by Jan Skriver.

Bumblebee with flower dust on its back.

photo : grethe bachmann

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