Romsey and District Beekeepers' Association

About Honeybee Swarms

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SWARMS and PEST CONTROL - Insect problems and pest control
HONEYBEES - A honeybee swarm is distinctive
BUMBLEBEES - nesting in nooks and crannies
COMMON WASPS - build large papery nests
HORNETS - like wasps but much larger
SOLITARY BEES - the lone bees that pollinate
Honeybee Swarms
Image missing: A swarm taking to the air
A swarm of HONEY BEES in flight can be described as a cloud of bees flying excitedly.
HONEY BEES are protected. They are vital pollinators and every effort should be made to protect them.
Why do honeybees swarm?
Swarming is natural; it happens when a healthy colony has increased in size and is looking for a new home.A swarm gathers into a brown mass of around 20,000 bees clustered tightly together around a queen.
Swarms often locate on shrubs, trees or buildings (including chimneys) however they can decide to pitch anywhere such as cars, lorries, lamposts, playhouses etc.
What do I do if I have a honeybee swarm?
Image missing: A swarm of honeybees
Firstly, don't panic. However, you probably need help.

Normally honeybee swarms are not aggressive because they have gorged themselves on honey stores and no longer have a home to defend.
Are the bees dangerous?
If provoked, a swarm will become increasingly defensive the longer it remains at a location.

WARNING: The bees can still sting.Children and animals should be kept well away from the swarm and adults should remain at a safe distance or go indoors and close the windows. Never attempt to destroy or move a swarm yourself.
Can someone take the bees away?
Swarms have the best chance of survival if they are taken by trained beekeepers and placed in beehives where they can thrive and increase.

Our swarm co-ordinator can arrange for someone to come and remove the swarm.

For swarms within 15 miles of Romsey centre, please call The Romsey Swarm Line on 07508 716044
What happens next?
Please be aware that there is normally a charge to cover expenses.

You will be asked about the position, size and behaviour of the swarm. You will need to provide clear directions.
Many calls turn out to be busy bumble bees or solitary bees; they nest for one season and will be gone by autumn. We do not remove them but can offer advice.
Outside our area, or not straightforward?
If you are outside our area or are unsure whether the insects are honeybees, please click here to go to the excellent British Beekeepers Association websiteAt the foot of that web page there is a button to allow you to enter your postcode to find your nearest honeybee swarm collector.
Alternatively, phone Steve Smith at Cedar Pest (02380 739071 or 07976 425453). Steve is an experienced beekeeper and qualified pest controller.