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Home Bees

There are over 200 different species of bees in the UK and contrary to popular belief they are not protected by law from eradication. However, these vital insects and pollinators are classified as endangered species. Bees are vital to our food chain. Pest Controllers will not apply pest control products or services to bees unless there is a credible threat to human life.

However, other control methods are available.

How to get rid of bees

Contrary to popular belief bees aren't protected and can be treated, however, they are endangered so we'd always recommend exploring all other avenues before considering eradication. Below is a step by step guide to assist you:

Leave them alone - Bees don't cause any problems to your property, and nor are you in danger of being stung if they are left alone and unprovoked. After the summer season, the bees will go away and not return to the nesting site the following year. By the time a colony has become obvious its activity will be about to decline naturally. Generally, colonies formed in spring usually decline naturally by late July, if not sooner. Therefore If at all possible always bee nests alone to thrive as their presence is actually beneficial for gardeners and their crop.

Relocation

If a nest is outside or underground then there shouldn't be a reason to really move it. In more conventional and accessible places such as bushes, trees and sheds, then contacting a local beekeeper or pest controller to relocate the nest is an option. If you suspect you have honeybees and they are causing you problems then we would recommend you use a swarm collector from the British Bee Keepers Association (www.bbka.org.uk/swarm). In most cases, they will come and collect the swarm free of charge. Only if the location of a nest is dangerous and removal not possible, should the next step be an option.

Eradication

The decision to treat will depend if it is possible to close the entrance(s) to the nest after treatment. In this circumstance make sure you use a trained professional. We strongly recommend you contact a professional pest control company, preferably a member of the BPCA. A trained professional will have the technical knowledge and access to a range of professional use insecticides which are not available to the public.

Post-treatment requirements will vary depending on the species of bees you have. For bumblebees and tree bees, blocking up access points will prevent non-target bees from entering and getting contaminated, as well as shortening the likelihood of other bees accessing the same area in the future.

For solitary/masonry bees, in the long term, re-pointing with sound mortar is the only answer. However, this must be thorough as bees hunting for a nest site will soon locate areas that have been missed.

For honey bees, it is essential that entrance points or blocked off, and if possible remove all the honeycomb. Failure to do this will cause robber bees to find the infected honey and take it back to their hive, thus contaminating it.

For more information on bees please visit the links below to the British Pest Control Association and the British Beekeepers Association.

BPCA information on Bees in the UK

British Bee Keepers Association what to do if you have a swarm of Honey Bees

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