Bees, bees, bees! Wonderful little creatures, pollinating our plants and producing delicious honey. They're vital in giving us the delicious foods we eat as well as making sure we have beautiful flowers that we can display in our home. They do so much for us, yet it's true that many people can't tell the difference between a honeybee, a bumblebee and a wasp.
It's this time of year that honeybees are swarming and becoming more active due to the warmer weather and the brighter, longer days. Bumblebees are collecting pollen and nectar and wasps seem to enjoy disturbing our lovely picnics at parks.
It's true that many people think there's just one type of bee - the fuzzy round bumblebees we see on the flowers in our garden and often the cartoon like bees we see in children's books. Honeybees can be mistaken for wasps and vice versa because of their similar shape and colour but if you look closely, they're in fact as different in appearance as they are in characteristics. In fact there's 26 different bumblebee species in the UK and about 270 species of bees in total. From honeybees, to bumblebees, leaf-cutter bees, mason bees, mining bees, carpenter bees, sweat bees and many many more.
We've put together a useful bee-guide which shows the differences in honeybees, bumblebees and wasps.
We're so lucky to have such a variety of these amazing creatures in our gardens. It's important that if you do have a bumblebee nest, to leave them be if they're not causing a problem. We rely on them hugely and if you don't bother them, they won't bother you. If you have a honey bee nest or swarm, call your local beekeeper (For all you Hull residing folk, that means us!). It's likely they will collect them or will know someone who has the space to hive them properly and look after them. Wasps are a different ball game. Like bumblebees, if they're not bothering you, leave them alone. If you have small children or pets, you may wish to get them exterminated.
Don't forget to plant bee-friendly flowers and plants in your garden! Please feel free to download and share our bee guide. Or, the next time you're out with family and friends and see a bee, impress them with your new found knowledge!