I knew that living in the country would come with a lot of changes, but I didn't realize how many pests I would have to deal with each day. Even the winter came with its own pest problems. My blog is all about the problematic pests that country living presents. You will find out what you can do to keep your home pest-free and how to eliminate the pests that have already moved into your home. Hopefully, my personal experiences can help you find the solutions to pest problems that you have and take back your home from the insects and rodents causing you troubles.
Honeybees and other flying insects play important roles in nature pollinating crops and killing agricultural pests. It's best if humans can learn to co-exist with these small flying creatures who just happen to have unpleasant stingers.
If you see swarming bees, or a hive has been created in an area of your property that concerns you, here are some ways to handle living with the bees until a qualified bee removal team can relocate them:
It's all in the pheromones
When you see a spinning cluster of bees in the air or on a surface maintaining a tight formation, you may wonder what keeps them together. The answer is pheromones, those hormonal scents released and detected by flying insects to encourage them to swarm, seek nectar or attack.
In the case of swarms of bees the pheromones are being given off by the queen inside each breakaway swarm. Breakaway swarms form when a colony of bees grows too large. Some of the bees take the queen and search for a new home, while some stay in the old spot and raise a new queen.
Pheromones are also responsible for the way more bees will suddenly show up to sting you after you've received one bee sting. The first bee sent off a signal before it died (bees, unlike wasps, perish after they sting you) that told other bees in the vicinity that there was a threat and to come provide backup. Obviously if you avoid making that first bee mad you'll save yourself a lot of trouble.
Things that annoy bees
Strong scents and perfumes can irritate a bee's delicate smell detectors or make them act as if there is a threat to their colony. Loud power equipment or music may also trigger bees to defend their hive. If you have blooming clover or other bee-attracting ground cover on your property, walking through the lawn while bees are collecting nectar may alarm bees.
Some flying insects--although not bees normally--nest in the ground, so keep an eye out for areas where you see them coming and going. Stay clear of the specific site, and note the hours when bees are pollinating fruit trees and flower beds, so you don't disturb their business during those times.
Sometimes there isn't a human but a natural cause for bees to become enraged. Any invaders including insects, birds and mammals can set a hive off, as can nearby branches that bang into the hive when it's stormy or windy. If the colony chose a poor spot for their hive, it may become unstable and parts of it will fall to the ground. This can also make bees enraged and swarm, especially if their queen is in one of the clumps that landed on your lawn.
Get professional help
It's best to let a trained bee recovery person handle relocating any errant hives, as one man recently found out. Merely putting on a beekeeper's suit did not save him from more than 100 bee stings.
Call in the experts for this job. They have the tools and skills necessary to smoke the bees (which calms the bees by masking pheromone scents) and to pry the hardened propolis away from the branch or other support structure of the hive.
Only around 15% of swarming hives make it in the wild when they break free of the old colony, so it's important to let bee removal teams try to save and re-home bee colonies. Don't panic when you see them on your property. Most swarms and colonies are peaceful and only want to keep their fellow bees safe.
Bee removal specialists (like those at Bee Serious LLC) should always be contacted when you're having trouble with bees. They can answer all of your questions and give you more tips on getting along with those fascinating little workers.