Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images
Mortar bees, also called mason bees, are non-aggressive insects that assist with spring flower pollination. Mortar bees often make breeding nests by drilling holes in masonry or settling into airbrick holes. In some cases, this nesting may cause structural damage over time. Also, although mortar bees rarely sting, you may be uncomfortable with their presence. If you notice mortar bees nesting in the structure of your home or a detached building, you can encourage them to find another home.
Spray insecticide into each cavity or nest that you find.
Secure a piece of plastic mesh over the air brickwork, or fill holes with caulk to prevent future infestations.
Purchase an alternative bee nest that is suitable for mortar or mason bees if you do not want to harm or completely remove the insects from your property and garden area. You can find these at your local home improvement store or garden store. Follow the directions and allow a few weeks for the bees to begin using their new home.
Plant spearmint next to any areas where you want to discourage mortar bee nesting. The scent of spearmint repels mortar bees.
- "Mason Bees for the Backyard Gardener"; Sherian Wright; 2010
- "Pollination with Mason Bees"; Margriet Dogterom; 2002
- Always wear protective clothing and goggles when treating your home for bees. Mortar bees do not produce or protect honey, and they generally do not sting unless handled or squeezed directly. Still, be careful when working near them. Occasionally, stinging honey bees may mimic mortar bees in behaviour.
- Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images