'RGBee' to create habitats for the unsung heroes of the bee population

Between Monday 28th June and Sunday 4th July, the Exeter branch of RGB Building Supplies will be taking part in Solitary Bee Week by purchasing bee bricks to donate to community groups, schools and allotment associations.

Solitary bees are vital for the ecosystem, and as their name suggests, they tend not to live in colonies like honeybees and bumblebees. They make up 90% of the bee populations and are known to effectively pollinate plants and crops ensuring they are healthy and productive.

Solitary Bee Week is an annual week of education to raise awareness about the...

Road verges provide opportunity for wildflowers, bees and trees

Road verges provide opportunity for wildflowers, bees and trees

Authored by News Desk
Posted: Tue, 05/25/2021 - 2:51pm

Road verges cover 1.2% of land in Great Britain – an area the size of Dorset – and could be managed to help wildlife, new research shows .

University of Exeter researchers used Google Earth and Google Street View to estimate that verges account for 2,579 km2 (almost 1,000 square miles) of land.

About 27% of these verges are frequently mown, 41% is wilder grassland, 19% is woodland and the rest is scrub.

There are "significant opportunities" to improve verges by reducing mowing and planting trees, the researchers say.

"Our key message is that there's a...

bumblebees, bees

Big bumblebees learn locations of best flowers

Big bumblebees take time to learn the locations of the best flowers, new research shows.

Meanwhile smaller bumblebees – which have a shorter flight range and less carrying capacity – don't pay special attention to flowers with the richest nectar.

University of Exeter scientists examined the "learning flights" which most bees perform after leaving flowers.

Honeybees are known to perform such flights – and the study shows bumblebees do the same, repeatedly looking back to memorise a flower's location.

"It might not be widely known that pollinating insects...

Bee Celebration

Event Date: 
22/09/2018 - 10:00am to 4:00pm
Princesshay, Exeter

Princesshay have a free family event on 22nd September in celebration of bees. The event includes artwork, family workshops and tours from 10am to 4pm to celebrate the centre’s rooftop garden, home to thousands of bees.

The event will unveil a brand-new, temporary art installation representing flowers loved by bees and created by aptly-named artist, Bee Watson. Visitors can also join in with a free family craft workshop and make paper flowers to add to the installation. There will also be a rare opportunity to tour the bee garden hidden above the city on Princesshay’s roof....

Bumblebee fair at Saxon Brook in Exeter

Authored by News Desk
Posted: Mon, 08/20/2018 - 7:49am

Redrow Homes is welcoming visitors to its Saxon Brook development in Pinhoe, Exeter for a bee themed bonanza in celebration of their partnership with the Bumblebee Conservation Trust.

The event, on Saturady 1 September, will also be a showcase of some of the fantastic local food and drink the area has to offer. The free one-day event is open from 11am-4pm and will see a range of superb Devonian produce on sale from ice cream and local fruit and vegetables to gourmet jacket potatoes, nachos and burgers. There will also be a pop-up bar where visitors can quench their thirst with beer...

The Donkey Sanctuary’s latest rescue gets staff buzzing

Authored by News Desk
Posted: Wed, 07/04/2018 - 10:58pm

A colony of honey bees that took up residence at The Donkey Sanctuary’s headquarters have been saved thanks to a quick thinking member of staff. Jenifer Tucker, website manager at The Donkey Sanctuary who is also a beekeeper heard that the bees had chosen Slade House, the charity’s main offices, as their new home and knew that as a working environment, they would not be able to stay there. As the bees had chosen the roof space in Slade House, it would have been virtually impossible to remove them without the intervention of a pest controller. At this time of year, honey bees are likely to...

Asian hornet nests found by radio-tracking

Authored by News Desk
Posted: Wed, 07/04/2018 - 10:15pm

Electronic radio tags could be used to track invasive Asian hornets and stop them colonising the UK and killing honeybees, new research shows.

Scientists from the University of Exeter attached tiny tags to Asian hornets, then used a tracking device to follow them to their nests; the first time this has been achieved.

They tested the technique in southern France and Jersey (see footnotes) – where Asian hornets are well established – and the tags led researchers to five previously undiscovered nests.

“Our new method of tracking offers a really important new tool to...

Devon builds for bees

The winners of the ‘Build for Bees’ competition, which encouraged Devon’s residents to build the biggest and best bug hotels for pollinators, have been decided.

There was heavy competition, with lots of creative and well-designed entries submitted from schools, community groups, individuals and families.

Niquita Potter, of East Budleigh, won the ‘best individual build’ category, while Friends of the Byes, a community nature group in Sidmouth, won the best community group build.

Their design cleverly included a thatched roof, thanks to a donation from a local...

Bee creative in the garden!

Authored by News Desk
Posted: Sun, 04/23/2017 - 3:49pm

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) and The Wildlife Trusts have joined forces to urge gardeners to do more to help protect bumblebees and solitary bees, heroes of the pollinator world. The Bee Creative in the Garden! call comes as bees are under increasing pressure largely due to loss of habitat. In the countryside, 97% of lowland meadow has already been lost and the dramatic decrease in suitable habitats isn’t just confined to rural areas. The network of 15 million gardens that once formed ‘green corridors’ for wildlife is also disappearing at an alarming rate. In response here in the...

Get building for bees competition launched

Authored by News Desk
Posted: Fri, 03/24/2017 - 2:08pm

Devon Local Nature Partnership has launched its ‘Build for Bees’ competition to inspire the public to provide habitats for pollinators.

It was launched at the Devon Outdoor Learning and Sustainability Conference at Buckfast Abbey as part of the ‘Get Devon Buzzing’ campaign.

Prizes include an exclusive tour of Goren Farm near Honiton, memberships to the Devon Wildlife Trust, Buglife and the Bumblebee Conservation Trust and wildflower seed packs.

A great activity for schools, the competition aims to encourage the public to get outdoors and to take part in practical...