Honey bee cutout from roof in Canton

Honey bees arrived at this property approx. 6 weeks before us.

Initially the only clue that there were honey bees house sitting was the sticky honey running thru an open screw hole in the ceiling, but the honey bees became far more apparent when scaffolding was erected for carrying out other works, including roof repairs.

On initial investigation from inside the property we could find no evidence of the honey bees in the ceiling using thermal imaging and other techniques; there was no thermal image probably because of the insulation between the ceiling and the colony, and no audible noise probably because of the insulation despite attempts at probing them.

So access was thru the roof utilising the scaffolding already erected; scaffolding was not in the best position for working in the valley on a steep roof so it was necessary to wear a harness and line attached to the scaffold on the other side of the dormer ridge to prevent any serious fall.

The bees were entering the roof next to the apex at the juncture of the two ridges, upon removing these tiles there was no clear evidence of them anywhere, just hundreds milling about going in no particular direction, but we found the colony 3 or 4 tiles over. It was interesting to see comb lying flat, having presumably fallen from the roof as a result of heat, which explains the honey dripping thru the ceiling.

Brood was added to the bee box followed by the bees, very luckily the queen was found at the end of the job when the tiles were being put back in position; we had thought we had collected her earlier in the cut-out but apparently not – we often find the queen out by herself when carrying out cut-outs.

It had been arranged that any repairs required were to be carried out by the onsite builder, often we will carry out these repairs ourselves but as they had works under way it made more sense for the builder to carry out the reparations; the ridge tiles will require cementing back in position and we would recommend that the felt be completely removed from both sides of the ridge line and replaced with new, as well as the insulation in the area that we had exposed, as this will reduce the likelihood of future swarms showing interest.

The bees and brood were added to the apiary this evening and given some nectar, just before it started to rain.

For further information on bee removal and relocation please use the contact form in the side bar or

call 02922 401649 to speak to someone local who knows all about it.

If you are looking for more info on removing bees from a chimney check out our article Removing bees in a chimney, for information on bee removal and relocation from roofs you may want to look at our page Honey bees in roof, or if you have bees in a wall our page Honey bees in wall maybe of use, For additional examples on removals of honey bees from other more unusual places check thru our blog page Honey Bee Removal EXPERTS and search for “unusual bee removals”.