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There are a lot of different insects that seem to like to burrow in the ground. There are ground wasps, mud daubers, ants and ground bees. It is not always easy to tell which insect you have throwing up piles of dirt on your lawn, however, as the kick piles look very similar to the untrained eye. Richland Pest and Bee Control can help you distinguish ground, or mining, bees from these other burrowing insects. It is important to note that ground bees and mud daubers are not the same insect. Mud daubers are a species of wasp while ground or mining bees are a species of solitary bee.
What danger do ground bees pose?
The ground bee itself is not an aggressive bee. They are a solitary species of bee and as such, do not form colonies that will swarm and aggressively protect a single queen and her nest. Each female digs her own nest and lays her own eggs. The female of the species is the only one able to sting but will only do so if seriously threatened or aggravated.
Ground bees might not be as aggressive as other species but they are still dangerous and they will sting anyone. So please take bee infestations seriously, no matter what species is bugging you. Call Richland Pest & Bee Control right away!
The ground bee nests can cause quite a bit of mess and can cause a bit of trouble for the grass of your lawn if it is popular. However, it is generally safe to mow the grass around the nest and not get attacked. It is important that you make sure that you are actually dealing with ground bees, however. There are a number of other kinds of insects that nest in the ground, such as yellow jackets and bumble bees. These are social insects and will aggressively protect their nest from danger.
You also do need to be careful of where you walk, as a ground bee will sting if stood on or swatted. This is potentially dangerous for those that are allergic to bee venom.
If you find that you have a number of small mounds of dirt on your lawn and the soil is dry and sandy, you may have an infestation of ground bees, but it could also be something more sinister. We recommend that you call a professional in to deal with the problem, as our licensed exterminators here at Richland Pest and Bee Control in CT have the correct tools and techniques to deal with all kinds of ground nesting insects without endangering ourselves or you.
How do you prevent a ground bee infestation?
As ground bees and other kinds of ground nesting insects like the soil to be dry and sandy, you can prevent them from starting to nest by ensuring that the soil is always damp and by regularly soaking the grass and soil with at least an inch of water during nesting time. This makes the ground uninhabitable and any ground bees or wasps that are there will move their nests to a more desirable location.
Another tactic is to change the composition of your garden soil. If you make it less sandy then it becomes a less desirable habitat for the ground bee and they will be inclined to nest elsewhere. This can be done through the addition of diatomaceous earth or top soil to the extent that the sandy under layer is completely covered by at least an inch of soil.
It has been found that standard, over-the-counter pesticides are not effective against these solitary insects. Pesticides work well in cases where the insect will carry the poison into the nest and infect other members of the colony. Since ground bees are solitary creatures, you will only eradicate a single female or male bee and potentially some of the eggs or larvae in the nest.
The CT bee removal experts at Richland Pest and Bee Control have years of experience with ground bees and we know the best way to solve your bee problem. Give us a call right away!
Don't get stung by amateurs!
What do ground bees look like?
As the name suggests, ground or mining bees are a species of bee that builds solitary nests in the ground instead of communal nests of wax in trees. This means that you will never see a swarm of ground bees. You may see more than one flying around, but they are merely in the same place at the same time and are not part of the same social group.
There are a few different kinds of ground bees and they all vary slightly in appearance. They can be anywhere from 5.5mm long to 15mm long. They are typically a dark brown or black with a smattering of yellow or light colored hairs. They are a relatively slender species of bee. As with other species of bee, the ground bee has pollen carrying hairs along the side of the thorax. The ground bee also has a slight indentation between its eyes and antennae which contains short velvety hairs. The female digger bee has a stinger which she will use if threatened or antagonized.
What do ground bees eat and where do they live?
Ground bees make their nests in the ground, much like mud daubers do. They are also a solitary species of bee and each female will dig her own nest to lay her eggs in. You will never find more than one bee in a nest but you may find numerous nests in the same area. This is known as a ground bee community. The ground bee prefers to nest in dry and sandy soil as this is easier to dig out and build a nest in. They will happily nest in grassy banks and garden beds that do not get watered very often.
You will often see both male and female ground bees in the same area. The female will be busy provisioning her nest and the males will be searching for potential mates. Some species of ground bee have territorial males that will appear to be very aggressive but cannot actually sting. The female ground bee can sting but does not unless threatened.
Unlike wasps, the ground bee larvae eat pollen and nectar, not insects. The female bee will collect pollen and nectar and store this in the nest. Once the larvae hatch, they feed on this stored pollen and nectar until they are adult enough to gather their own.