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Thread: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

  1. #1

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    Default Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    After reading an article regarding the necessary closing of Eckhart Park in Auburn due to a ground bee infestation, I realized, that I do not understand the difference between 'ground bees' and 'honey bees'...(other than one lives in the ground and the other in hives). http://www.kpcnews.com/index.php?opt...test&Itemid=79

    I did a little 'Googling' on the topic. What I found:

    The ground bee is actually one of the more peaceful bees of the world and they are not aggressive at all. Commonly, you will probably not even notice these small bees, or their two inch mound of loose soil nest, as that is all they need in order to dig under to make their nest for the queen bee. Once the queen is inside of the burrow, she will make several tunnels and create all sorts of entries and exits in order to be ready for anything, the female will also create several horizontal tunnels and chambers which she will then lay one single egg at the end of each one.

    Of course the term ground bees is a very general term, as there are many different ground bees, bumble bees and even some wasps have been known to make their nest in the soil versus in a tree. Most ground bees are very solitary creatures and do not live in a colony for a very long time. While the males will all participate in the mating dance around the nest, as soon as the female lays her eggs, they will go off on their own usually.

    In the spring time, you may begin to notice that there are far more bees coming up from the ground and the reason for that is because all ground bees hatch from the ground in the spring time and go about their business! These bees are the type that pollinates flowers and vegetables and they are definitely of the mellow kind.


    http://www.abou****ees.com/ground-bees.html

    I remember as a child running barefoot in our yard stepping on a large bumble bee. Geez! Did that ever hurt...not just then...but for an extended period of time. Glad to know the city of Auburn is working on removing them from Eckhart Park. Hopefully, there will be enough others left to pollinate our flowers and vegetables in our area.

    I've read that our local honey bee population is at risk in this area? Do we have any local readers that has information on this?
    "It is the power of thought that gives man power over nature."
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  2. #2

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    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    The idea of the city killing these bees is quite disturbing. How many other types of bees and other beneficial insects is this also going to kill? Do they (the officials) not know that bees pollinate most of our vegetables and most all fruits? I believe people should take the time to properly evaluate a so called "problem" before "jumping the gun". That's the problem with a lot of what is wrong in the world. When most people encounter something they fear, do not understand, or generally dislike, their first inclination is to destroy it.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    Quote Originally Posted by HoosierHelen View Post
    After reading an article regarding the necessary closing of Eckhart Park in Auburn due to a ground bee infestation, I realized, that I do not understand the difference between 'ground bees' and 'honey bees'

    I've read that our local honey bee population is at risk in this area? Do we have any local readers that has information on this?

    i didn't read the article, but personally i have never encountered a "ground bee". i have however had a few encounters with these while mowing...

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_wasp

    In 1975, the German yellowjacket first appeared in Ohio, and has now become the dominant species over the eastern yellowjacket. It is bold and aggressive, and if provoked, it can sting repeatedly and painfully. It will mark aggressors, and will pursue them if provoked. The German yellowjacket builds its nests in cavities (not necessarily underground) with the peak worker population in temperate areas between 1,000 and 3,000 individuals between May to August, each colony producing several thousand new reproductives after this point, through November. The eastern yellowjacket builds its nests underground, also with the peak worker population between 1,000 and 3,000 individuals similar to the German yellowjacket. Nests are built entirely of wood fiber (usually weathered or dead) and are completely enclosed (football or soccer-ball shaped) except for a small opening (entrance) at the bottom. The color of the paper is highly dependent on the source of the wood fibers used. The nests contain multiple, horizontal tiers of combs (10 or more) within. Larvae hang down in combs.
    and they are a thousand times worse than any bee. most people mistake them for bees because they look alike, but there is a big difference between a wasp and a bee especially in their attitude and stinging capability. they are very aggressive.

    the best way to deal with them is to dump something flammable down the hole and light it.
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  4. #4

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    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    According to the link I found on ground bees, Bumble Bees are ground bees. So, if you've ever seen one of them, you have seen a ground bee, Michael.

    They also say that many wasps are ground wasps also. We have an overhang under our roof that the wasps were attracted to for several years. Anytime we mowed our yard around their nest, they sure as a heck came after us. My husband kept knocking their nest down and finally...they gave up on that location. Obviously those were not ground wasps...but he said the same as you, their stings are worse than a bee sting.
    "It is the power of thought that gives man power over nature."
    Hans Christian Anderson

  5. #5

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    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    Quote Originally Posted by michael medeski View Post
    i didn't read the article, but personally i have never encountered a "ground bee". i have however had a few encounters with these while mowing...

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_wasp



    and they are a thousand times worse than any bee. most people mistake them for bees because they look alike, but there is a big difference between a wasp and a bee especially in their attitude and stinging capability. they are very aggressive.

    the best way to deal with them is to dump something flammable down the hole and light it.

    The article and the bees to be exterminated is about "ground bees".

    From what I understand several types of bees fall under this discription, most of which are known to be the more docile types and some are even non-stinging.

    There is no mention of "aggressive" German YellowJackets or any other aggressive types.

    The article quotes parks superintendent Rick Hower as stating, “They’re basically a nonstinging bee, but they can grow and sting people” & “Right now, they’re just scary to kids.”

    I could understand if there were swarms of yellowjackets attacking people, but these bees are basically harmless to people.

    Like HossierHelen stated, I too would also think the bees in question would be great pollinators for the local people's backyard gardens.

    Wow... Your reply was the exact type of reason, & in direct correlation to the reason I posted my thoughts/opinion, on the subject of exterminating the bees in the first place.

    I guess the truth in my post came to light quick.....And it's unfortunate like my first post pointed out, that so many people who feel the best way to deal with something that they FEAR, DO NOT UNDERSTAND, or DISLIKE, is to DESTROY it.

    Like maybe "dump something flammable down the hole and light it."
    Last edited by FreeWorldOrder; 03-28-2012 at 02:19 PM.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    Quote Originally Posted by FreeWorldOrder View Post
    The article and the bees to be exterminated is about "ground bees".

    From what I understand several types of bees fall under this discription, most of which are known to be the more docile types and some are even non-stinging.

    There is no mention of "aggressive" German YellowJackets or any other aggressive types.

    The article quotes parks superintendent Rick Hower as stating, “They’re basically a nonstinging bee, but they can grow and sting people” & “Right now, they’re just scary to kids.”

    I could understand if there were swarms of yellowjackets attacking people, but these bees are basically harmless to people.

    Like HossierHelen stated, I too would also think the bees in question would be great pollinators for the local people's backyard gardens.
    thanks. like i said, i didn't read it.

    Quote Originally Posted by FreeWorldOrder View Post
    Wow... Your reply was the exact type of reason, & in direct correlation to the reason I posted my thoughts/opinion, on the subject of exterminating the bees in the first place.

    I guess the truth in my post came to light quick.....And it's unfortunate like my first post pointed out, that so many people who feel the best way to deal with something that they FEAR, DO NOT UNDERSTAND, or DISLIKE, is to DESTROY it.

    Like maybe "dump something flammable down the hole and light it."
    i don't fear them because i can "destroy" them. that said, i will run when being attacked.

    understanding them is not a problem. the problem is they don't understand me. if they would just learn to keep their nests away from where i mow/fish then i would not have to dislike/destroy them for inflicting pain on me and/or my family.
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  7. #7

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    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    I remember an article in the KPC news a year or 2 ago where a local bee expert had removed a swarm of bees that had completely overtaken (I believe a vehicle). He was capable of removing the entire population of these bees. I was so very impressed with that story. Can't recall his name, sure would be interested in his input on this topic.

    I really don't want our children to not be able to enjoy our Auburn parks, so I understand the city's intent.

    FreeWorldOrder has a very valid point also....what happens to the pollination and how it affects our vegetation? Wish we could hear from KPC's bee expert that they reported on. I imagine he might have some 1st hand knowledge on these matters?
    "It is the power of thought that gives man power over nature."
    Hans Christian Anderson

  8. #8

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    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    Quote Originally Posted by michael medeski View Post
    thanks. like i said, i didn't read it.



    i don't fear them because i can "destroy" them. that said, i will run when being attacked.

    understanding them is not a problem. the problem is they don't understand me. if they would just learn to keep their nests away from where i mow/fish then i would not have to dislike/destroy them for inflicting pain on me and/or my family.
    I was responding to the post about the ground bees in the park in Auburn,IN. & the extermination plan. Not the yellowjackets or the hornets that you have personally came into contact with while mowing & fishing. I can understand if there is a hornets nest, etc. where people could be in potential danger. Or even the "mud dobber" wasps that live on the underside of your dock. If that's what you want to do... then kill them. I'm talking about something totally different than your negative experiences with a potential pest or minor annoyance. I was thinking more along the lines of biodiversity, pollination of food crops, & whether the adverse effects and/or collateral damages of the extermination practices outweigh the risks asscociated with the original purported problem (ground bees).
    There's also the question of whether Integrated Pest Management could have worked here.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Integrated_pest_management

  9. #9

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    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    Quote Originally Posted by FreeWorldOrder View Post
    I was responding to the post about the ground bees in the park in Auburn,IN. & the extermination plan. Not the yellowjackets or the hornets that you have personally came into contact with while mowing & fishing. I can understand if there is a hornets nest, etc. where people could be in potential danger. Or even the "mud dobber" wasps that live on the underside of your dock. If that's what you want to do... then kill them. I'm talking about something totally different than your negative experiences with a potential pest or minor annoyance. I was thinking more along the lines of biodiversity, pollination of food crops, & whether the adverse effects and/or collateral damages of the extermination practices outweigh the risks asscociated with the original purported problem (ground bees).
    There's also the question of whether Integrated Pest Management could have worked here.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Integrated_pest_management
    FreeWorld, I understand and share your concerns. I just do not yet understand the damage our community in Auburn will experience by killing off these ground bees? ie Do we have a sufficient supply of ground bees in other locations that this will not effect our crops pollination? I'm believing there is an expert on this topic in our region that might inform us better? (at least I hope so)
    "It is the power of thought that gives man power over nature."
    Hans Christian Anderson

  10. #10

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    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    Quote Originally Posted by HoosierHelen View Post
    I remember an article in the KPC news a year or 2 ago where a local bee expert had removed a swarm of bees that had completely overtaken (I believe a vehicle). He was capable of removing the entire population of these bees. I was so very impressed with that story. Can't recall his name, sure would be interested in his input on this topic.
    I don't think this was the gentleman, but your post reminded me of this video:

    http://www.fwnews.tv/index.php?optio...id=3&video=314

  11. #11

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    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    Quote Originally Posted by james_t View Post
    I don't think this was the gentleman, but your post reminded me of this video:

    http://www.fwnews.tv/index.php?optio...id=3&video=314
    Thanks for sharing that video James. Very interesting to watch how quickly he got them all into that box. How he was able to recognize the queen bee has me curious? Also, I had never heard about a bee sting being good for arthritis. He obviously knows what he is doing.
    "It is the power of thought that gives man power over nature."
    Hans Christian Anderson

  12. #12

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    Default Re: Ground Bees and Eckhart Park

    Quote Originally Posted by james_t View Post
    I don't think this was the gentleman, but your post reminded me of this video:

    http://www.fwnews.tv/index.php?optio...id=3&video=314
    Thanks... that was very interesting!

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