Got swarms? Leave them BEE!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

By Bud Paine

Pinal Rural Fire Rescue

This is the time of year that honeybees are splitting up and moving around to establish new honeycombs. A clustered swarm of many bees may appear frightening, but most spring swarm clusters of European honey bees—the common honey bees here in our area—are extremely docile. It takes quite a bit of aggravation, such as being hit by sticks and stones or squirted with a hose, to create defensive behavior.

The reason a bee swarm looks like a clump of bees is because all of the workers are gathered around the queen, forming a clump. The queen is not the strongest of flyers, and so will need to rest at some point, perhaps on a branch, fence, or the side of a house. Meanwhile, ‘scout bees’ will be sent out to look for a suitable new place for the colony to live.

Are swarms dangerous?

They are focused on finding a new nest, not on attacking. That said, it is important to keep your distance from swarming bees, because if the bees feel threatened, then it is possible they will attack. A swarm may stay around for a few days, depending on how quickly the scout bees find a suitable new home. This could happen very quickly, even within a day.

If the bees don’t find a new nesting location, they may begin producing beeswax and forming combs at the spot where the cluster formed, such as a tree limb, the overhang of a house, or another unusual place. These “exposed comb” colonies may exist until fall (or year-round in warm-winter areas), but robbing bees, hungry birds, and inclement weather usually put an end to these colonies and their combs very quickly.

So, the point is…let them be and they will most likely just fly away to a new place. A swarm requires a large cavity, 4-9 gallons in size, to establish a new comb, so unless they have that where you see them they will leave. If you anger them by spraying water or knocking the swarm they will very well retaliate!

We have responded to several homes in Mammoth where the same swarm is slowly moving from property to adjacent property trying to find a new home. Pinal Rural Fire and Rescue will remove a swarm if it has stayed for several days, but usually we will just “wait and see” if it moves again.

Once it stays, and makes no sign to be leaving after 4-5 days, we will take care of the swarm for you. But, please, remember all the good honey bees do as they pollenate and create honey before you just try to destroy the swarm. If a swarm stays for more than 3-5 days, call PRF&R at 520-465-5300, and we will help you remove the swarm.

Staff (1210 Posts)

There are news or informational items frequently written by staff or submitted to the Copper Basin News, San Manuel Miner, Superior Sun, Pinal Nugget or Oracle Towne Crier for inclusion in our print or digital products. These items are not credited with an author.


facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
facebooktwitterby feather

Comments are closed.

  • Stories Just Posted

    Support the American Red Cross and become an everyday hero March is Red Cross Month

    February 27th, 2015
    by

    TUCSON— In honor of Red Cross Month in March, the American Red Cross encourages people to uncover their inner hero […]


    March 3rd Marks the Celebration of U.S. Navy Reserve’s 100th Anniversary

    February 27th, 2015
    by

    Washington DC, – The Navy Reserve will mark its centennial anniversary on Tuesday, March 3rd with a series of events […]


    Gaspard de la Nuit at Desert View Performing Arts Center

    February 25th, 2015
    by

    On Sunday, March 1, at 3 p.m., join The Oracle Piano Society for Picturing Ravel: Gaspard de la nuit, A Musical Soliloquy at SaddleBrooke II, 39900 S.


    Documentary film ‘Power’s War’ completed

    February 25th, 2015
    by

    Pinal Nugget On Feb. 15, 1918 the Graham Guardian newspaper’s headline said “OFFICERS KILLED IN BATTLE WITH SLACKERS”.


  • Stories Just For You

    Town of Superior fire truck renovation begins

    February 24th, 2015
    by

    Superior Sun In November 2014 Henry Munoz presented the Superior Town Council with a proposal to renovate the 1947 Pierce Fire Truck as a representation and honor to the past


    Legends of Superior Trail Fest attracts outdoor enthusiasts

    February 24th, 2015
    by

    The Legends of Superior Trail Committee along with their partners Resolution Copper, Arizona Trail Association and the Superior Optimist Club hosted the fourth annual Legends of Superior Trail Fest on Saturday.


    Reflections from a cowboy’s mother

    February 24th, 2015
    by

    Special to the Copper Basin News The following are from a Mom’s point of view and not necessarily the thoughts of the Cowboy.


    CPR class held in Dudleyville

    February 24th, 2015
    by

    Copper Area News On Saturday, Feb. 7 a CPR training class was held in Dudleyville.


  • Facebook

  • [Advertisement.]
  • Arizona Headlines & Current Weather

  • Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin