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Adding Value To The Business of Cropping

Native 'trees for bees' Spotter Guide

Learning Intentions:

    Students will be able to:
  • identify native 'bee trees' using their flowers as clues
  • explain the benefits of bee trees
  • appreciate that bee trees are needed in greater numbers to help bee populations flourish.

Spot flowers that bees love

  1. Use the spotter guide below to identify New Zealand native trees that bees love. Bees include honey bees, bumble bees and native bees. At what times of the year were they flowering when you found them?

    Native trees for bees Spotter Guide download (pdf, A4)

  2. Were bees actually foraging on the flowers? Why or why not?
  3. What do you notice about the flowers and how they might be attracting bees?
  4. Discuss what benefits bees gain from the flowers. How can you tell if bees are collecting nectar or pollen?
  5. Discuss why bees are increasingly in need of more sources of food. Where might their food sources have gone?

Hints and tips

  • Warning: Stay at least 0.5 m away from bees that are foraging on flowers. Mitigate any risks associated with potential stings and allergic reactions by being prepared with appropriate adult assistance and medicines.

Related resources:

Introduced trees for bees Spotter Guide

Selecting trees for bees Activity

Flowers for bees

Pollinator pulling power

Pollinators in New Zealand

Trees for bees — keeping bees healthy