A Carlsbad Boy Scout built a “bee-quarium” — an aquarium for bees — at the Discovery Center of Agua Hedionda Lagoon in Carlsbad to bring awareness about the decline of bee populations and the importance of bees.
The aluminum and plexiglass observation hive is supported by an 11-foot-tall wood structure, which lets visitors watch live bees as they work inside their bee hive.
The BEE-Quarium Observation Hive, as Branden Lintner, 18, calls his innovative see-through viewing structure for bees, took a little over a year to finish, from initial concept to final installation.
Eagle Scout Branden Lintner shows the Bee-Quarium Observation Hive that he built at the Discovery Center of Agua Hedionda Lagoon in Carlsbad. (Melinda Lintner)
Lintner, an Eagle Scout in Carlsbad Troop 784 in the Rancho San Luis Rey Zone of the Boy Scouts of America, started the work at the onset of the pandemic in early March 2020 and completed it in March this year as part of his Eagle Scout project.
“My goal is to educate visitors about bees, which are declining at an unthinkable rate,” said Lintner, a 2021 graduate of Sage Creek High School. “I hope visitors will learn more about bees and why we can’t afford to let these critical pollinators disappear.”
Lintner hopes the bee hive exhibit will encourage visitors to plant bee-friendly and other pollinator-friendly plants in their gardens and use natural organic pesticides instead of toxic ones, which poison pollinators.
Lintner and his team of more than 20 volunteers donated 386 volunteer hours to complete the project.
“The biggest challenge was creating a one-of-a-kind working observation bee hive and collaborating and making necessary changes along the way, while dealing with obstacles of the COVID pandemic,” Lintner said.
Lintner, who joined Tiger Cub Scouts in first grade and became a Boy Scout 11 years ago, wanted to build the project at the Discovery Center because he took many educational field trips there, which inspired him.
The BEE-Quarium Observation Hive is installed in the Discovery Center’s Pollinator Garden at 1580 Cannon Road. The center is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays to Saturdays and noon to 4 p.m. Sundays. Check the website for upcoming closures on Oct. 22 and Nov. 5.