EDMONTON -- You can help protect Alberta's bee population by investing in some tiny real estate for your backyard.

A group of NAIT students is selling bee hotels, wooden boxes filled with holes that provide a home for native solitary bees.

"They tend to sometimes look like flies, hornets or wasps. They're a little smaller, a little fuzzier," club vice president Ross Stevenson explained on CTV Morning Live Edmonton.

The bees are important pollinators and the pre-built hotels give them a safe place to lay their eggs in the fall.

"They have tree cuttings in them and paper straws and that gives a lot of variation for these bees to choose what they want to live in," Stevenson said. "There are different sized holes because there's different sized bees, so lots of options for them to choose from."

The hotels work best if they are placed three feet off the ground, facing south or southeast. They can be mounted onto a tree, fence or post.

The initiative was started with the help of a grant from the NAIT Students' Association and is a fundraiser for the Biological Sciences Club's educational events and certifications.

The hotels are $35 and will be available through March 2021.