Hi GM, it's a standard size tit box (we had birds in it last year). Not sure what kind of bees they are. They look small to medium in size and don't seem to have much colour. They look fluffy though. Lots of them going in and out all day. We peeked at it this evening when it seemed less active and we could see lots of them inside.
Do they look like this (orange,black,white)?
Looks like it Pansyface, thanks ever so much for the link.
Bee-friendly beekeeping has the best chance of success in the light of intimate knowledge of the bee colony, it's biology, life style and needs - in this I wholeheartedly agree with Green Magpie. Nevertheless, wild bees have been observed to do very well indeed, given a suitable and safe nest as well as good forage.
Just had a look and they really are identical to those on pansyface's link. Here is their house! Loads of them going in and out.
How cool! I had a queen bumble checking out a bird box earlier this year. I would have paid her to move in but she didn't.
Ooh, that's quite exciting! It sounds lime the sort of place they'll be very happy, and your garden will benefit from the pollination. I don't think these bees survive the winter as a colony, so you will be able to clear out the box later in the year if you want to.
Maybe next year Victoria Sponge!
Hope so on the pollination front Green Magpie. Have put some colourful plants by my fruit and veg plot to attract them over! A sort of Sainsburys for bees!
My other half was worried that they would attack him (!) but we've been walking by them all day and they are very content to do their own thing. They are so lovely and busy!
There's no reason they would attack anyone. The only bee you need to worry about is the one you haven't seen (and so you sit on it, stand on it, etc). Once you start watching them go about their business, they're fascinating creatures.
Just to be clear, I don't have a problem with anyone giving me good reasoned explanation of the pros and cons of the different methods (I had no idea the official view is to cut the queens wings), and Green Magpie who I recognise as a valued contributor here says much the same as Bee-friendly Beekeeper so I have no problem there, just that a couple of others seemed to be jumping on the bandwagon as crackpots.
So if BKAs are not necessarily right, where do wannabe bee friendly keepers find out how to proceed? Presumably google will help but it can be difficult to sort out the good and the bad....
I have no aspiration to bee keeping myself although I am keen to attract bees to my small garden by providing useful plants but I know my parents have talked about it in the past and my mum did look at doing a course, although my dad would have just built a hive from plans on the internet and made it up as a he went along... I think they have grown out of that idea now, but in case it resurfaces where should I point them for information?
I'm not clueless, but on the basis that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, I may be worse than clueless!