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There are over 4000 species of bees in North America and all of them stay incredibly busy! Bees pollinate 80% of the world's plants including 90 different food crops. 1 out of every 3 bites of food you eat is thanks to bees. The honey bee alone is responsible for $15 billion in US agricultural crops each year.
Unlike the hive-nesting honey bees, solitary and mason bees nest as individuals. Natural nesting locations like logs and burrows are often limiting and can interfere with a successful reproductive cycle. With the recent alarming decline in bee populations and an increase in public awareness, it is important for us to understand just how fragile such a beneficial insect is and how we can help provide them with a better habitat.
Solitary and mason bees are gentle, sweet and pose little threat of stinging. They’re very efficient pollinators and are definitely welcome in my home garden. You can invite them too by providing a bee house! Aside from giving them a safe space to lay their eggs away from predators, bad weather and chemicals, a bee house is a very cute aesthetic addition to any yard or garden area!