Luckily for the bumblebees, they don't die if they sting. ON the other hand, honey bees DO die if they sting. In bumblebees, the stinger is smooth, like a needle, so it can pierce the skin several times. Honeybees have a sting with barbs, though, and when they sting you, it stays in the skin and pulls part of bee away with it - so the bee then dies. It seems sad, and daft, but in the world of bees it makes sense. The bumblebee survives; but the honeybee needs to protect the hive, and in a sense it sacrifices itself for that. There are maybe 20,000 - 50,000 honeybees in a hive, so it's worth the bee making sure nothing hurts it. So next time you see a bee - remember the sting thing. They don't want to sting you - they have MUCH more important things to do. They'll only sting you if they see you as a threat. Pretty brave, really, when you think about it. And bumblebees do this amazing thing if you approach - they'll wave first one leg, then two, to warn you off - and then if you're still hanging around and not giving them some space, they'll turn and show you their sting. That's THREE warnings...and they're trying really hard NOT to sting you! I think that's pretty fair - and pretty clever. :)
And so the Map is born. Just a way of joining up all the utterly brilliant forest gardens across the country, doing all sort of fabulous foresty garden stuff, but never having enough time to tell people where they are. If you have a forest garden, or forest garden project, and you want to Get It On The Map, now's your moment. Just click here and give us yer info. We'll do the rest. No dosh required. We just like joining stuff up. Click: Get Us On The Map
Lots and lots of gorgeous titchy things happening right now. Titchy chicks, baby vegetables, billions of baby bumblebees everywhere. The new worker bumblebees will be all growing up and hungry - they'll need loads of food right now. Some of them are collecting food for the nest, some will keep it clean, and look after the baby bees. We were clearing round an apple tree this week, and a cloud of bumblebees suddenly rose up out of the long grass wondering why we were bashing their nest! We apologised mightily (always polite to apologise when you disturb a bee) and backed off, leaving them in peace. Tranquility returned and we will leave that patch of long grass with a big sign next to it. Later in the summer, the queen will lay eggs that will hatch into make bees or new queen bees. The queen's going to need loads of energy for this, and so this is why the worker bees are bringing it all home to store right now. When we say busy as a bee - it's not just honey bees we mean. They're all at it ...For more info, check out the splendid BumbleBee Conservation Trust. and you can see how bee friendly your garden is easily with their beekind.bumblebeeconservation.org/finder and map! What's your score?
This is written by us, for you, to show what we do...