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porters palace 05-19-2012 11:05 PM

Honey bees and bumble bees
We're in the midst of buying an old century home
that previously had a honey bees in the brick wall....during demo the contractors removed the hive, cleaned up all the leftovers...
It appears they've come back and are building inside the wall again...any suggestions?
Also we have around 20-30 bumble bees on the other side of the house...any suggestions for them?

chrisn 05-20-2012 02:42 AM

Call the local beekeeper

joecaption 05-20-2012 05:09 AM

Find how there getting in and fix it.

Ravenworks 05-20-2012 06:51 AM

Don't kill them by any means bees are our friends.
As said before call a bee keeper,bees are under a lot of stress these days and are dying off at an alarming rate,a lot of what we eat rely's on bees.

stuart45 05-20-2012 03:02 PM

Where I live a swarm of Honey bees is worth about $200.

user1007 05-20-2012 06:11 PM

I don't know if you have been following things but some disease is thinning honey bee hives---worldwide but especially in the US---in staggering numbers. The bees leave the hive and never return. Honey bees are the major pollinators of the fruits and many vegetable we eat and are super critical to global food supplies. In fact they are responsible for at least 1/3 of it. Here is a USDA piece on Colony Collapse Disorder. It is a really big deal.

Obviously you do not want a hive in your wall but call around. Ag extension or your university entomology department will find you a beekeeper willing to come and move them. Please do not kill them. Depending on where you are, beekeepers or honey farms may be listed in the phone book. Here is the URL for the honeybee conservancy. They may have resources and ideas.

Here is a wild idea. Do you have room on your property for a hive or two? My second cousins raise honey and there is nothing like fresh honey or chewing on a piece of honeycomb. In all the years I visited, and even reaching my hand in a hive, I was never stung. I have been stung encountering bees elsewhere though. American honeybees are really fairly docile creatures.

Did you know that St. Valentine is the patron saint of beekeepers and not just sappy greeting cards with hearts? You must be really sweet people to attract honey and bumble bees. Are you sure they are bumble bees and not carpenter bees by the way? I have found a lot of the latter around old construction for some reason. The make perfectly round holes in wood members. They seldom sting but are very aggressive.

Ravenworks 05-20-2012 07:29 PM

sdsester thanks for posting that info,I watched a documentary about this disease and they can't find out why this is happening.The pecan growers are freaking out about it that's for sure.

porters palace 05-20-2012 07:57 PM

Thanks for the input!!
I live in southern Ontario...wasn't aware of the disease problem...

We would prefer to have them relocated...I'll have to work on finding a bee keeper... As far as the bumblebees are concerned...I was under the impression they are ground dwelling....these ones are swarming around the gables, only on one side...mating I guess?!?

PAbugman 05-21-2012 08:59 AM

What you are calling “bumblebees” are probably “carpenter bees” easily confused from a distance. They drill into the wood and lay eggs, pack with pollen, repeat. Treat the holes with insecticides, patch, paint with a serious outdoor paint. They may still drill through it next year. Every spring this event occurs. If you can get to the holes, a good product to use is “Tri-Die” an aerosol that sprays an insecticidal dust.

The previous honey bee nest should have been removed completely and cleaned out with detergent, chemical cleaner, etc so as to remove all traces of odor, pheromone, etc. Otherwise new colonies will continue to move in. It is a real mess. If you can get a beekeeper to take the colony; good. My experience is that they take the outdoor swarms that are found hanging on trees, etc. Wall nesting colonies are very difficult if not impossible to remove alive. Afterwards, since the wall has been repaired from the previous demo, you must go over every square inch of that wall and obsessively seal cracks, holes, gaps, etc. Check it frequently as materials dry out, shrink, weather and they will quickly find the gaps again.

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