While bees play a very important role in our ecosystem and in our gardens, they can be an annoyance to share our space with. This is especially so for people who have bee sting allergies and have to avoid bees at all costs. Even for those who are not deathly allergic, it’s certainly not a pleasant experience to get stung by a bee. It’s not uncommon for beehives to form in unwanted places, as bees have a natural tendency to seek out hollow, cavernous areas to make their hives. These hives can cause some minor destruction to your home too. But how can you go about removing the unwanted colonist’s bees without getting stung?
You should always consider the help of a professional bee removal company if the hive is large and aggressive, but here’s what you need to know to attempt to take it down yourself.
Know Thy Enemy
First and foremost, if bees are swarming in or around your home, it goes without saying that you need to locate the hive and the exact source of the infestation. Next, you should identify the kind of bee you’re dealing with before coming up with a plan of attack. Some bees are considered a pest, like the Asian honey bee, while European honey bees and native bees are important to our environment for pollination and honey production. Don’t forget we humans make honey from bumblebees so we need to give them the proper respect they deserve. Identifying the type of bee, wasp or hornet will give you a better idea of the amount of damage caused, the threat of stings and will enable you to choose the correct method of bee removal.
Wear Protective Clothing
Beekeepers always wear protective clothing and head gear – for a good reason. It is definitely a wise idea to wear long pants, long sleeves, thick gloves and something around your face, head, and neck when attempting to remove bees yourself. Choose light colours, like white, as it is believed that bees don’t like darker colours and will tend to attack them. Wear cuffed clothing or put elastic bands on the ends of your sleeves and ankles of your trousers to be safe. Take family members, children, and pets away from the area before beginning. Aggressive bees will attack anything in the vicinity.
Get a Good Insecticide
Once you’re dressed in all the appropriate clothing, try not to freak out your neighbours and head for the hive and spray. An insecticide that has a fast knockdown and can be sprayed from a distance is definitely a good choice.
Act in the Morning or Evening
Because bees are diurnal (daytime) insects, they are more active during the hotter parts of the day, so the nest will be fuller in the morning and evening. This makes these the best times of day to catch them all at once.
Observe their flight patterns
Bees tend to fly the same routes in and out of their hive so watch out for this pattern. Stay out of their flight path and approach them from the opposite side to avoid being stung. Keep in the shade if possible to draw less attention to yourself.
Stay Calm and Be Quick
It’s easier said than done but it is vital to stay calm. Loud noises, running and screaming will only attract and agitate the bees further. Spray the hive and get away as quickly as you can as it’s going to be quite unpredictable and chaotic once they are hit with the inscesticide.
Check Back and Destroy the Hive
You’ll have to keep an eye on the hive for activity to make sure that most of the bees have been exterminated. If they haven’t, you’ll, unfortunately, need to don your makeshift beekeeper suit again and give them another blast. When the bees are gone, get rid of the beehive so that another colony doesn’t move in later in the year leaving you right back where you started.
Remove Bees and Staying Sting-free
Removing bees on your own is by no means an easy task and is best left to the professionals. However, if you do find yourself in a situation where you’re feeling brave, follow our seven simple steps above carefully and avoid getting stung. With a bit of luck you’ll be able to get those pesky bees to buzz off!