Green Neighbors Program

The Clark County Green Neighbors Program was developed and is maintained by Clark County Solid Waste and Environmental Outreach to assist citizens with developing more sustainable lifestyles and building a strong environmental community in Clark County. Solid waste regional planning and programs are a cooperative effort of Battle Ground, Camas, Clark County, La Center, Ridgefield, Vancouver, Washougal, and Yacolt. Funding for this project provided by a grant from the Washington State Department of Ecology.

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In offering information on the Web, Clark County seeks to balance our requirement for public access with the privacy needs of individual citizens. Information that appears on the Clark County Web site is part of the public record. By law, it is available for public access, whether by telephone request, visiting county offices, or through other means.

This site contains links to other websites. Clark County is not responsible for the privacy practices or the content, accuracy or opinions expressed on such websites, and such websites are not investigated, monitored or checked by us for accuracy or completeness. Inclusion of any linked website on our site does not imply approval or endorsement of the linked website by us.

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Something's buzzing at Pacific Park

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As much as 1/3 of our food supply relies on the work of bees, and pollinators are at the heart of resilient ecosystems.

The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation

​When most people think of buzzing pollinators, the familiar honeybee and bumblebee come to mind. But did you know that there are over 4,000 species of bee native to North America, and the honeybee is not one of them! Most native species are solitary bees, meaning they don't live in hive communities. One of the most beautiful and fascinating among these is the mason bee. 

Mason bees create their nests in natural cracks or holes including hollow stems and holes left in snags by woodpeckers. Laying their eggs at the far reaches of the chosen crack or hole, the bee caps its nest with clay or mud (hence the name for this master of masonry!). The eggs develop through the winter into larvae, then pupae, and then adult bees, which emerge in early spring.

Notoriously friendly, you don't need to worry about getting stung by a mason bee. Only the females have stingers, and will only sting in defense if being trapped or squished. They are very efficient pollinators; it would take 15,000 to 20,000 honeybees to pollinate as many flowers as only 250 female mason bees! They also emerge earlier in the spring than other bee species, pollinating early flowering crops like apples. Unlike many other pollinators, they will continue to fly and pollinate in cloudy and cool weather, making them beneficial additions to your spring garden. 

How do you invite mason bees into your yard? Set out a mason bee home with tubing for them to nest in, with each tube being about the diameter of a pencil. Mason bees will find their way to your hand-crafted habitat and continue to use your space year after year, especially with a little maintenance and TLC from you! Want to see mason bee homes and habitat in person to decide if raising them is right for you? Head to Natural Gardens at Pacific Park to see our mason bee homes and get ideas on how to create your own. If you visit from about March through May, you may spot mason bees busy at work!

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