The Problem with Honey Bees in Buildings
Initially having honey bees in buildings may not appear to be a problem, over time the consequences will likely become more evident, and the difficulties in having them removed and therefore cost will increase.
5 points to consider about honey bees in buildings
When deciding on the best course of action for honey bees in buildings i.e to leave or to remove the honey bees, one should take into consideration the following
What ever the circumstances of the bees in your property we have a suitable solution and methodology for their removal & relocation.
Stings from honey bees in buildings
The consequences of being stung by a honey bee can be just as bad as those of a wasp sting, and the temperament of a honey bee colony can change from being uninterested to persistently nasty at any time there is a change in the Queen.
Temperament of Honey bees in buildings
Weather can have an adverse effect on a bee colonies temperament, causing them to be a lot touchier than they may normally be, so increasing the risk of being stung, this is especially relevant to businesses with Honey Bees in Buildings.
Many people have the misguided belief that honey bees are harmless, and that because they die after stinging they will cause no harm if left undisturbed. Unfortunately this simply is not realistic. Anyone that has come across a bothersome honey bee that just persists in buzzing you, will know exactly what I’m talking about – these bees can make an area uncomfortable to be in or to pass through.
Having honey bees in buildings especially if its near an outdoor garden area for a home or office can make the area a no go zone.
Worst still if at a busy work place, it can make things dangerous especially to those involved in moving cumbersome or heavy loads about. Having to worry about being stung by a honey bee should not be necessary (any don’t forget any sting after the first can cause an anaphylactic shock).
Honey Bees in Commercial, Public & Civic Buildings
Health and safety laws require that a safe environment be provide at business premises for everyone, including employees, guests, visitors and anyone else that can gain access. In the case of honey bee infestations this responsibility probably extends beyond the premises boundary, though for what distance would be difficult to assess and probably a matter for the Courts should it arise.
Honey bees can pose a severe risk to anyone needing to pass within the proximity of a honey bee colonies entrance, so having honey bees in buildings is a threat to the heath & safety of anyone on the property, especially those that have previously had a a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) and need an epinephrine autoinjector (Epi-pen) for injecting a measured dose of epinephrine (adrenaline) for the treatment of anaphylaxis.
The longer there are honey bees in buildings the greater the possibility of an incident
The queens pheromones generally guides the temperament of a honey bee colony but once a colony has been in situ for sufficient time to create a swarm (usually 2 years) or possibly before (if the queen is superseded), then the colonies temperament is likely to change: rarely for the better.
The UK has imported queen honey bees from all around the world, so we now have the offspring of these queens from different races inter breeding with each other. This can result in some particularly nasty aggressive mixes – “that’s what makes our work so much fun” – but seriously this is a cause for great concern.
Having honey bees in buildings can be a real risk to safety – just run through the RAMS: that should give you sufficient indication that they are not something you should be working/living side by side with and that a course of action is required for their live removal & relocation.
In situations where we come across particularly aggressive honey bee colonies our experience (having worked with many other aggressive honey bee colonies) really helps. More importantly this experience helps us to write our RAMS properly.
Our RAMS can go a long way to removing the possibility of a nasty incident that could be so extreme that it could potentially lead to death as a result of an anaphylactic shock.
So no matter what type of organisation, if a honey bee colony has infested the property there is a responsibility to deal with it before its too late. Obviously the more people that are likely to come within proximity of the bee nest the greater the risk of harm is.
Honey Bees in Historical Heritage & Listed Properties
We are regularly found carrying out live honey bee removal & relocations at historical & heritage properties, and other listed buildings.
We fully understand the needs and requirements for working on Heritage properties and have invested in the tools & knowledge needed for doing the work safely, and technically correctly, so limiting the possibility of causing damage as a result of repetitive hammer blows, and accidental slips with a disc cutter, to both personnel and the building.
Heritage properties not only have to worry about the honey bees being a risk to public safety but also they can be the indirect cause for a Stored Product Insect infestation, resulting in damage to textiles within the property. So honey bees in buildings in these instances can be of real concern.
The dead bees offer an ideal source of nourishment for Stored Product Insects (SPI’s) and often the removal of the honey bee colony and associated detritus sees a fall in activity of these destructive SPI’s.
Honey Bees in Residential Property
We are regularly approached by property owners that have been living with honey bees in buildings quite happily for years, only to find that the bees have suddenly become bothersome and persistently aggressive, so making an outside area an unpleasant place to be, or making the short walk to the car an unpleasant event.
This can happen at any time there is a change in the Queen bee. More often than not this won’t happen in the first year after their arrival, but any time from then especially once the colony has started to produce swarms the bees temperament can change to being far more aggressive & persistent. Year on year we come across more and more customers that have been living alongside a honey bee nest in their home that find the bees temperament has suddenly changed for the worse, and that it is no longer possible to use the garden or that it has become very uncomfortable for them to get to their front door when coming home.
Secondary infestations as a result of having honey bees in buildings
If you have honey bees in buildings other things to consider are that they attract secondary pests that cause additional damage, so those clothes moth that have been munching through your wardrobe and carpets may well be a result of that very same honey bee colony.
When you come to selling your property you have a responsibility to let the potential new owner know about the bee colony, who will likely want it removed prior to a purchase agreement, so as well as having had to live with the inconvenience of the bees and the increased potential risk associated with the bees you will need to organise & pay for the removal of the bees at one of the most stressful times of your life by all accounts.
If you have Honey bees in a building then give us a call, we don’t charge for talking to you about your particular circumstances, or better still fill out our contact form below so we can ask you for some pertinent information to better answer your questions.
Our honey bee relocation Specialist is waiting for you!
Swarmcatcher are the UK honey bee colony removal specialists that provide an ethical eco-friendly bee removal and relocation service across the UK.
For further information on bee removal and relocation please use the contact form in the side bar or message button below, or CALL 01297 441272 to speak to someone local who knows all about it.
If you are looking for information on removing bees from a chimney check out our article ‘Honey bees in chimney‘, or if you repeatedly have bee swarms take up home in your chimney you may want to look at our page ‘Why honey bees like chimneys‘ & ‘Everything you need to consider when removing bees in a chimney‘ which is a fairly extensive overview.
For examples on removals of honey bees from these and other more unusual places check thru our blog page Honey Bee Removals by our specialists and investigate our Tag cloud too.
Don’t forget a general overview on honey bee removals which can be found at ‘Live honey bee removal‘.