Most species of bees fly out in spring. Before that, they live as larvae in the insect hotel. (€ 8.87 at Amazon *) Few species of bees produce two generations a year under optimal conditions.
- Locked holes in the insect hotel
- Who lives in my insect hotel?
- Who moves into the insect hotel?
The red mason bee and the fur bee are the first species you will see. They pollinate the early flowering trees at the beginning of March. A few months later the honey bees also appear.
You can tell that the brood has left your insect hotel by the broken nest locks. These usually consist of clay or similar material. However, this characteristic can also be misleading. Sometimes nest predators like wasps break into the shelter to deposit their own brood in the tube. Your offspring will later feed on the hatched larvae.
Clean insect hotel
Likewise, you cannot rely on the locked nests if you want to check whether the wild bees have hatched at all. The brood of numerous species remains in the insect hotel for months. Even after six months there may still be living larvae behind closed holes. For this reason, you should not break the nest locks when cleaning your insect hotel.
Tips and Tricks
There are some useful ways to tell if the brood is still alive behind the seal:
- Put your insect hotel in an opaque cardboard box in the spring.
- Drill a tiny hole.
- If there is really still brood behind the locks, the hatched bees fly to the light source.
- This will prevent new bees from breeding in the hotel.
- Holes that are still closed in autumn are very likely not to contain fresh brood.