Blueberrytalk's Weblog

Everything connected to growing blueberries

Incubating leafcutter bee cocoons

Posted by blueberrytalk on December 5, 2010

Leafcutter bees have been increasing in our farming area. The problem is that a lot of their lifespan follows the blueberry pollination season. Incubating leafcutter coccons is a big business in Alberta where the leafcutter’s lifespan is timed with the alfalfa pollination.  They have been used in New Brunswick on lowbush blueberries.

We hope to give the cocoons in the box below a warmer environment in the spring to produce bees earlier in the season. The cocoons outside the box are the control group to find out the natural time for leafcutter bees to emerge from their cocoons.

leafcutter bee cocoons

UPDATE: On April 1 the cocoons in the box were brought in the house for incubation. On May 3 the first male emerged. He was able to squeeze through the wire!

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