Sniffer-bee!

Honey bee by northeastwildlife.co.uk

Honeybees can be used to 'sniff out' certain substances, even explosives! Bees are trained to recognise a smell and rewarded with sugar solution. Later, when the bees detect that smell, they extend their tongue hoping for their usual reward. Honeybees make excellent 'sniffer dogs' because they are inexpensive, quick to train (a few minutes per bee) and can detect extremely faint smells. 

How important are bees?

'If the bee disappears off the surface of the globe, then man would only have four years of life left.'

Albert Einstein

Urban bee by Paul Hobson

Wild info: bees

Please join your local wildlife trust today

Please join your local wildlife trust today

Please join your local wildlife trust today

Bees are amazing!

The gentle hum of bees is the sound of summer. Buzzing from flower to flower, they are nature's hardest working gardeners: pollinating fruit trees, vegetables and flowers in our gardens, farmland and natural spaces. Bee pollination ensures that many of our wild flowers keep growing, and they are crucial to the Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire habitats that BBOWT is trying to protect.

You can find bees...

At home...

Gardens are a great place to spot bees from as early as February to as late as November. They may even be seen in mid winter on mild sunny days. During hot weather in summer, you might see bees collecting water from bird baths, ponds, swimming pools and other water sources.

...and away!

Bees thrive in areas where there is a good supply of nectar-rich flowers throughout their active season. Some of our flower-filled nature reserves are simply humming with bees. We've listed some of the best places to visit here:

Find out more about the different types of bee you might see in your own back-garden, or take a look at some fun facts about bees in our gallery. Find out what you can do to help bees here.

Bee friendly plants

Bee on mallow by Kevin Wailes

If you'd like to attract more bees to your garden, download our list of planting ideas and top tips here.

How to make a bee home

Nick Baker shows us to build a bee home. A fun activity for adults and children!

Watch video

Your bee photos

From Flickr

HolderBee on Bird's-foot Trefoil

More from this gallery on Flickr