BeeBlitz FAQ

What is a BeeBlitz?

A BeeBlitz is derived from the term “BioBlitz” which is an intense period of biological surveying in an attempt to record all the living species within a designated area. In a BeeBlitz, volunteers, naturalists and scientists focus on bees; they gather at a specific spot to observe and document the area’s local bee population. During a BeeBlitz, a team’s goal is to photograph and record as many bee species as possible in their designated area.

When should I host a BeeBlitz?

The optimal time to go out to look for bees is around 11am - 4pm. You can host your event in Spring, Summer, or Autumn, as long as the bees are active in your desired location. Just don't schedule a BeeBlitz during the winter!

Who should I invite?

There are no prerequisites for attending a BeeBlitz other than a love of bees and an interest in learning. You can invite friends, family, colleagues and community members as well. BeeBlitz is surely a fun way to bring people together for a great cause.

What should everyone bring to my BeeBlitz?

You will be outside for the duration of your event, so keep an eye on the event day's weather forecast and dress appropriately. Please find below a list of suggested items to bring with you to ensure that your day runs smoothly!

  • Water (!!)
  • Sunscreen
  • Hat
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Camera Phone (if you have an iPhone or Android, please download iNaturalist and bring your device!)
  • More Water!

Caution your attendees to avoid bringing extra items with them. The Honeybee Conservancy will not be held liable for lost or misplaced items during a BeeBlitz.

Do I need to wear a beekeeping suit or worry about bee stings?

No, a beekeeping suit isn't needed as you will only view honey and/or native bees from a distance. If you have suffered an allergic reaction to bee stings previously, please consult with your doctor before attending and bring an Epi-pen and/or allergy medicine.

Do I need to do anything in advance to prepare?

You do need to register! Please fill out the form here to register your event. Our team member, Kristin, will contact you to offer support and some educational materials if you'd like.

In addition to registering, please download the iNaturalist app and create an account if you have a compatible device.

Can I get help with species identification?

On the BeeBlitz information page, you will find some handouts available for download: Common Bees of New York, Common Bees of Iowa, and Common Bees of Detroit. Otherwise, iNaturalist can help with species identification. It has a fantastic function which suggests common IDs for you based on location, visual similarity and the collective knowledge of the community of iNaturalist users. The suggestions are based on the quality of the photo (it can be hard to photograph bees!) and are not always correct, but they will often point you in the right direction.

How will the data that I collect be used?

A large number of scientists and taxonomic experts are involved in the iNaturalist community and provide enormous value by helping to identify observations. Your photos, depending on their quality, will be reviewed by experts with the goal of verifying an accurate species identification for your observation. Check out the Identify section of iNaturalist! These are photos that have been taken that have yet to be verified and keyed to species.

What if it rains?

Bees aren’t a fan of the rain! If it is raining during the time that you wanted to host your BeeBlitz, it's best to reschedule.

Have Further Questions?

We would love to help! If you are interested in organizing a BeeBlitz event in your local area, please feel free to contact Kristin by emailing: bumblebee [at] thehoneybeeconservancy [dot] org ; we’re happy to point you in the right direction or give your effort a shout out!

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