Bees and compost bins

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Yorkie

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Bees and compost bins
« on: June 08, 2021, 21:37 »
I have two plastic dalek compost bins; one is easier to get to and thus gets filled first.  I haven't really put much into the other one and am not sure of the state of the stuff inside.

When I went to the bins earlier today to add some stuff to the first bin, there were a lot of buzzing insects around.  It wasn't easy to tell what they were, but they could well have been bumble bee type insects rather than - say wasps.  It also wasn't clear where they were based, as it's quite dark behind the shed where the bins are, but it looked as though they might be going into and out of a gap at the bottom of the second bin.

Is this likely? 

Clearly, I don't want to disturb them, though am slightly worried about the risk of being stung over the season.  Assuming they are in the bin, what's the chances of them vacating it at some point later in the season?
I try to take one day at a time, but sometimes several days all attack me at once...

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Subversive_plot

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Re: Bees and compost bins
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2021, 02:04 »
Check that second bin with a torch in hand (or cell phone with a light). Are the insects fuzzy (like bumble bees)? Or do they look like hornets or something else?

If you can find a local beekeeper, they may be able to help you move the insects, or at least assess the situation and advise you how to proceed.

Good luck!
Please stay safe!  Wear a mask, and observe social distancing!

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hasbeans

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Re: Bees and compost bins
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2021, 06:18 »
Whatever they are they should go come autumn and I don't think they will nest there again.  We had bumbly bees in the wall/roof cavity last year, I think they were gone by September, as were the digging ones I had the year before that took over a patch I was attempting to level/terrace.  I tend not to wait for wasps to leave!

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jambop

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Re: Bees and compost bins
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2021, 07:51 »

Wasps will go into compost heaps because they like the heat and it is relatively quite. Bumble bees will also go and form a nest in a compost heap. I suggest you just take a few minutes one sunny day to observe the comings and goings. You should be able to spot bumble bees easily enough and wasps tend to exit much faster than bumbles. If they are bumble these are classed as a solitary bee you rarely get more than a couple of hundred. Bumbles are good for the garden and should pose no problem to you. Wasps can make a large colony over a summer and can also be aggressive. They do a lot of good in the garden as well though but can become a pest if they are in a situation that you visit regularly so if they do become a problem or you think they might best to have them exterminated... I don't know the Dalek extermination helpline phone number though :lol:  I was a beekeeper.

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Yorkie

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Re: Bees and compost bins
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2021, 20:48 »
Thanks all.  Will have a closer look at them - my instinct is that they're not wasps (they have a higher / faster buzz, if you know what I mean, I think).

If only I knew how to exterminate only the Daleks  :lol:

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Subversive_plot

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Re: Bees and compost bins
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2021, 21:13 »
It's a Dalek after all.  You don't mean exterminate. . .

You mean EX - TER - MIN - ATE !!!

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Mr Dog

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Re: Bees and compost bins
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2021, 08:37 »
One of my daleks regularly has a bumble bee nest inside. The only downside is the amount of time I 'waste' watching their comings and goings....



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