How to help these insects ‘Bee’t the heat

Kansas

WICHITA (KSNT) — These extreme temperatures don’t just have people seeking cooler pastures. Animals and insects across the region are also looking for a refresher. Especially bees. 

Amanda Alessi is the director of the Great Plains Nature Center. She said out in the sun, bees are just as thirsty as people are. 

“When the temperatures rise has a lot to do with water, so just access to water sources are going to dry up, and that’s really the main issue,” said Alessi.

John Mcdowell and his wife are beekeepers. They said when water is limited, bees start looking for water in the wrong places.

“Your swimming pool, same with your hot tubs,” said McDowell

Although that may be a way for people to cool down, it’s not the case for bees. “Yeah, well, they drown,” said McDowell.

There are a few simple things you can do to keep these essential insects hydrated in sweltering temperatures.

“You can provide food sources for them with varying different kinds of flowering, native flowering plants that are going to provide nectar,” Alessi said.

McDowell’s advice is perhaps even easier. “Put out, like a terracotta pot with gravel or marbles in it with water, and you can put sugar water if you want,” he added. 

The ratio for sugar water is one to one. McDowell said the bees will thank you for it. “The bees will come to expect you to be out there about the same time every day with that water,” he said.

The honeybee is not a native species to Kansas, but they have prospered here and are the state insect.

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