457: Dave Hunter on Native Bees.
Developing a relationship between primary pollinators and growers.
Dave is the founder and owner of Crown Bees, a native bee company in Woodinville, WA that sells bees and products online, to nurseries and farmers. His experience with mason bees extends over two decades. Dave founded the commercial mason bee industry, Orchard Bee Association, and works with researchers to ensure that what Crown Bees practices is both ethical for the bee and efficient for the farmer/gardener. He co-authored the book The Mason Bee Revolution, and speaks to gardeners, farmers, and researchers throughout the year.
In This Podcast:Realizing that his apple trees were barely producing compared to his neighbors, Dave Hunter found the answer was mason bees. His hobby increased his harvest, and eventually his new passion developed into a brand-new industry and a new company. Now he is working hard to educate how mason bees and leaf cutter bees are a significant pollination solution. His goal is to build more native bee industries around the world.
Listen in and learn about:
- Realizing how his neighbor’s apple harvests were connected to mason bees
- Starting a new industry for pollinators and increasing food production
- Bees that make more food are being overlooked
- Close to 22,000 species of bees across the world and only seven are honeybees
- 90% are solitary species that nest in ground or holes
- Higher yields with mason bees
- Leaf cutter bees and complaints about TOO much food
- Why native bees are better pollinators as pollen spreader
- Blocks and holes for mason bees
- See pictures in his article – link below
- Thoughts on why the bees are dying off
- Simple ways to make a difference and help save the bees
- How to build nesting-hole homes and how bees and wasps will find them
- Harvesting during the fall
- Why wood blocks and bamboo are not ideal and the better way to make bee houses
- Bee Haven as a low-cost way to learn about bees
- The reluctant and minimal sting of native bees
- Ecoregions and bee and wasp species that are not really unknown
- The Native Bee Network – how you can be a part of the research
- Bee mail – monthly tips on how to help the bees in your neighborhood
- Some of the products on his website
- Getting his book written
As well as:
His failure – Expecting to make a difference right away
His success – The Native Bee Network
His drive – Helping make more food for the world for the next generation
His advice – Each yard and each voice can make a difference for bees, and pass on what you’ve learned
Dave’s post on our Blog
The Future of Food ~ Native Bees
Books written by Dave
“Mason Bee Revolution: How the Hardest Working Bee Can Save the World – One Backyard at a Time“
Dave’s Book recommendations:
The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcom Gladwell
He also recommends the movie Bottle Shock
How to reach Dave:
This contest is closed. We say “Thank You” to Dave and Crown Bees for this offer.
Special thanks to our sponsor:gemplers.com/urbanfarm (use code URBANFARM01)
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