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Lots of nesting trays for cleaning!

For  gardeners, setting out nests, harvesting cocoons and cleaning cocoons and cleaning nests is manageable.  I always say- do it early in the fall and then it is DONE!   However, when Christmas comes around there are always nesting trays that have escaped the early fall cleaning session!

It is more difficult if the nest cleaning is done in the middle of winter because the drying process has to be done inside.  This is no problem with cocoons since these usually air dry in about an hour or so (dry cocoons is a cool room, otherwise bees will emerge).  But the housing or shelters plus the nesting trays need to dry too and you need space for that.  When you have as many nests as the upper picture, winter cleanup is near to impossible unless you have a barn or large space to do it in.

Using  water, under high pressure
for washing trays.

 When you have one or a dozen nests, cleaning them with a scrubbing brush is no problem.  But for larger quantities,  cleaning them becomes a big job.

One year we had an opportunity to wash nesting trays with a high pressure hose.  Even though it was labour intensive because each trays had to be handled, the cleaning job was superb.  The water removed all signs of mud mites and other debris.

Both trays and Highrise shelters were dried in the sun and readied for re-assembly.  This is easy because both the wooden nesting trays and the newer Quicklock Corn trays can be inserted into the Highrise shelter and hung up into our yurts or like in earlier years, can be set up in other types of structures.

The Highrise- is a boon to managing mason bees in large quantities.

Both Highrise and Quicklock nesting trays can be obtained from www.Beediverse.com

Cleaned wooden nesting trays.
Cleaned Highrise shelters drying
in the sun.  (black containers in background
are pots for blueberry plants- nothing
to do with the washing process
or mason bees)                  

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