I am currently not in a position, due to excess colony numbers, to offer a swarm removal service for this current season 2019... Sorry
Swarm of Bees, Colony of Bees or Colony of Wasps ??

There can be a lot of confusion, and even panic, over a Swarm Of Bees that suddenly appear and are found to be hanging in a cluster from a branch, wall or swing set or elsewhere. 

 

Also in relation to a colony that might have already established, say in a wall or in a roof space or under a shed. 

 

Are they Honeybees, Bumblebees or Wasps, and what should be done with them, if anything ?

First off, a bit of information about all three.

Common Wasp: Vespa Vulgaris.

 

Like the Honeybees is a vital part of our delicate ecosystem, keeping insects that would normally eat plants in your garden such as caterpillars etc in check.

The Queen newly mated from the previous summer will emerge from her slumber as the temperatures rise in spring, and look for a spot to set up home. She is the only one of last years colony, plus other hibernating queens to survive the winter, unlike Honeybees.

 

She will set up home and that can be anywhere from a roof space to a hollow in a tree, to inside your nice dry garage. 

The first sign you may see is a delicate grey small paper like nest structure, made from chewed wood pulp mixed with saliva drying to the above. If left unchecked this will grow in size and will eventually house approximately 3000 to 6000 thousand active wasps.

If this nest is found it is best left to experts to remove , if it is anywhere that is, in close proximity to people and their is a real risk of getting stung. If it is somewhere where people will not be in contact with them as in an isolated location they can be left, and they all will die away naturally after the first autumn frosts, with only the newly mated queens surviving to disperse to setup new nests in different locations.

The old nest will cease to be viable and will be abandoned.

Bumblebees: Bombus Terrestris ( Most Commonly encountered Bumblebee )

 

Again like the Honeybees, they are a vital part of our delicate ecosystem, pollinating multitudes of different fruiting plants.

The Queen newly mated from the previous summer will emerge from her slumber as the temperatures rise in spring, and look for a spot to set up home. She is the only one of last years colony, plus other hibernating queens to survive the winter, unlike Honeybees.

 

She will set up home usually at ground level, anywhere from under a shed, a disused mouse hole, to another favourite spot, a nice cosy compost heap.

The first sign you may see is a large fat Queen on a Spring Day out looking for a suitable nest site, buzzing close to the ground scouting out crevices and disused mouse holes. Also they can be seen at this early stage collecting the first available Pollen and Nectar, as yet they have no workers ( Unlike the Honeybee who has a depleted workforce ) to do this for her.

Bumblebees will not sting unless threatened, they will only sting if their nest was attacked, otherwise they will happily Bumble about their business of collecting Pollen and Nectar in a fascinating industrious fashion !. 

 

If this nest is found and it is in very close proximity to where people will be, and said people are not comfortable to let them stay in situ. Then it is best left to experts to remove. If it is somewhere where people will not be in contact with them as in an isolated location they can be left, and they all will die away naturally after the first autumn frosts, with only the newly mated queens surviving to disperse to setup new nests in different locations.

The old nest will cease to be viable and will be abandoned.

Irish Honeybee: .Apis Meliffera Melliffera

 

First Off... A Swarm of Bees is not a Threatening Situation.

Though understandably if a Swarm of Bees suddenly arrives and is hanging out of your Patio table or elsewhere , they will have to be moved.

 

If it is a Swarm of Bees ( see below ) it is necessary to call an experienced beekeeper to remove these. they can be removed, brought away and placed in a hive, and with a lot of specialist care, brought on to be a healthy colony of bees.

If it is a colony of bees that have already setup a nest in a cavity / space somewhere it is more complicated. Again a Beekeeper needs to be contacted. Honeybees are a protected species and under legislation, and rightly so, cannot be exterminated.

A Beekeeper can in certain instances, depending on where they are, remove them and rehouse them as described above.

See below video of a Swarm arrival in a Bait Hive I had setup. Excuse the Deadpan Narration... not used to the Silverscreen :-) .

©2016 By Leinster Honey.