Yesterday, we decided to move our bee post from the very unsuccessful position it has been for a couple of years. It was too shady and not very visible to us, so we decided on a more exposed, south facing location in the garden. We made a new post, also on an ash branch, and drilled more holes in the old one just to make it a bit more attractive and secured it to the end of our trellis (it will be covered by a vine, clematis and rose later in the season). This is what the end product looked like.
Male Red Mason Bee, note the long antennae and the red, hairy abdomen
Male red Mason Bee feeding on ErysimumToday, in the afternoon, barely 24 hours after the post were placed in their new location!, we've seen a male inspecting the holes (looking like it was counting them over and over) and then a female - the first I've seen this year - actually getting into a hole and kicking out some pieces of wood. When she emerged, she was briefly chased by the male. At some point we could see two males.
Male near hole
Male inspecting hole
Female in the hole pushing wood outThe bee posts will hopefully attract other bee species and their parasites, so I look forward to the next season of post watching.