Monday, March 14, 2011

Honey Bees in House Walls, Eaves and Columns

It's springtime in Florida, and that means we are getting loads of calls for swarming honey bees! Swarms can be very frightening to folks who've never had experience working with honey bees, but in reality are not *usually* very much of a threat as they have no nest to defend.
Clermont Honey Bee swarm on Tree

A swarm occurs when a bee colony outgrows it's nesting area. This happens usually, when nectar and pollen sources from flowers become abundant, (springtime flowering), and the queen starts laying up to 2,000 eggs a day. At some point, about half the colony will leave, looking for a new location to build a new nest, while leaving the old nest to rebuild it's numbers.
Orlando Honey Bee swarm on building wall

This new swarm will typically land for a few hours, somewhere near the mother colony. We usually advise clients to leave the swarm alone, keep pets and people away, and the swarm will move on, without harming a thing.
Longwood Bee Swarm on Block Wall

But, when these swarms alight on house walls, eaves or other structural elements, it's best to give us a call for proper removal, as they often will move into wall voids, eave voids and just about anywhere else, often putting away hundreds of pounds of honey, pollen and wax withing the wall. Please do not try to self treat these swarms, as bad things can happen!
Apopka Bee Colony in wall

For proper honey bee swarm removal, Call us at 1-800-343-5317

Richard Martyniak, M.Sc., Entomologist

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