The last two open houses were buzzing with activity at YuKonstruct’s “Work Bees” as people took the opportunity to learn about Yukon’s native bees and use a variety of tools to build shelters for solitary cavity nesting bees. The work place was alive with tools, led by the drills and followed by hammers, screwdrivers, and staple guns. All of the drills were in full operation in order to complete the labour-intensive first step of boring 1,800 6-inch deep holes!

In a quieter corner, participants savoured a few snacks, chatted about bees, and looked through a variety of displays. Most guests were able to pick out the one non-bee species among the twelve specimens. There were different styles of bee houses on exhibit, ranging from a simple bundle of hollow stems to a more complex tiered “hotel” designed for easy viewing of developing bee larvae. People took home skills and information sheets to build their own bee houses. The bee houses built at this event are being installed at various locations in the Yukon. I am installing some at local farms growing berries to find out what solitary bees are pollinating the crops. With the help of citizen scientists, bee houses will be installed in other parts of the territory to gather information on Yukon’s native solitary cavity nesting bees.

Thank you to the Yukon Environmental Awareness Fund and everyone involved in making this a freely accessible, well-attended, and enjoyable event.