Do They Cause Damage?
Honey Bees only become a problem when they choose to nest within a structure. During the warm months, bees forage for pollen and nectar which they use to produce honey. Honey is the food supply the bees use to survive the winter. Mature colonies can store large amounts of honey in voids within the structure. Should something happen that kills the colony, such as disease or a pesticide application, the combs will begin to deteriorate and the released honey can run down into walls, floors etc. This can result in physical damage, odors and infestations of other scavenging insects.
Stings can produce a life-threatening reaction in individuals that are allergic to them.
What Can Masters Touch Do?
Removal of a honey bee colony in a structure is a highly specialized service that requires removal of the entire colony and hive. This will require cutting or removing things like drywall, siding, soffits and eaves. Locating the exact location of the hive is required before any removal process can begin. Pesticides should never be used on Honey Bees in a building void.
How Can You Help?
Overall maintenance of the exterior of the structure is important as it limits access points for bees to get established, such as repairing rotted or damaged fascia boards, soffits, eaves, window and door frames, and caulking cracks and seams.
Honey Bees are vital to the pollination of crops and the production of food, but can be a real problem when they choose a structure to build their hive.
A mature colony can consist of 20,000-80,000 individuals. The Queen can lay 1500-2000 eggs per day. Young workers care for the brood, build the combs and provide hive ventilation and defense. Older workers forage for pollen and nectar.
In late spring, mature colonies will produce additional queens and drones in preparation for swarming. Swarming occurs if the hive is getting to large for the space available of if the Queen is failing. Shortly before the new Queen hatches, the old queen and about have the workers will leave the hive. They will cluster on a tree branch or other nearby object until a new hive location is found, at which point the cluster breaks up and heads for the new nest location. These clusters of bees are very docile as they have no hive or brood to defend and will disperse in a few hours. Unless they are creating a dangerous situation, they should be left to go on their own.