I figured if I can't have honeybees right now it doesn't mean I can't have another type of bee. According to my beekeeping friend Dave it is a little late in the season to get going with Mason Bees so I'm going to give bumble bees a try. A while back, after my beekeeping course, my oldest daughter decided she wanted to try keeping bumble bees. She's always had a fascinating relationship with bumbles. When she and I took a class at a local nature center 14 years ago we learned the difference between bees, wasps and hornets, which ones are aggressive and which ones aren't, etc... After that time she's always handled bumble bees. She mostly likes to stroke their backs when they are busy working a flower. Since she is so brave and had a real interest we ordered Marla Spivak's book: Befriending Bumble Bees.
Maya, my daughter, caught a bunch of bumbles initially but we were unsure in our ability to determine which ones were queens so she'd always let them go. Well, since I'm bee-less I've decided to give the bumbles another try. With bumbles I won't have to worry about swarm management and worried neighbors, I'll just be able to still enjoy having a relationship with bees.
Now all I need is a bumble bee to show up. They are late this year.
Wish me luck! :D