This morning I was reading up on early spring bees, as one would obviously do on a cold, rainy winters morning, and I found out about an amazing British solitary bee that likes to live and lay eggs in snail shells. Snail shells of all things!!!
The bee in question would be Osmia Bicolor, otherwise known as the “Two-coloured Mason Bee” or the “Snail thatching bee”.
Below is a wonderful video about just how they use the snails shell.
Now I was reading this article on them but it says that they are really only on the south coast while this page says they are found all the way up to The Wash so I have hopes that Yorkshire is an outside possibility!
So with this amazing hope in place I gathered a few snail shells from around the garden (I have 2 families of blackbirds, so finding empty shells is easier than you think!) and I have placed them in 2 areas where I will be able to see them without disturbing them if they should appear.
Now I also decided to keep a few bits of detritus that I would normally dispose of in the compost bin. Just to the left of the pic above is my Aquilegia which is always good for some dried stems and the like. So I have placed a few bits not too far away from the 2 sites so they still have to move around but it’s there if they find it.
Now I realise this may all be a total pipe-dream and they really don’t come this far north… But if I don’t try I will NEVER know. And if nothing does then maybe something else will make something of them. I will be just as happy!
I think the important thing here is to try.