In a very real way, we all owe a great debt of gratitude to honeybees.
Honeybees are such tireless pollinators that the phrase "busy as a bee" is used to mean the very definition of hard work. Bees spend practically their entire days moving from flower to flower, collecting sweet nectar, and pollinating their seeds in the process.
Without the pollinating work that bees provide, both wild flowering plants and many agricultural crop yields would decline dramatically, and a few plant species wouldn't be able to reproduce at all. Clearly, bees deserve our respect and gratitude.
But natural bee populations are in decline, for reasons that are not fully understood. Some scientists blame viruses or other diseases, while others blame widespread use of certain pesticides. Whatever the reasons, however, bees are having a tough time of things right now. So in addition to our respect and gratitude, bees also need our help; and the biggest way we can help them is by not disturbing them unless we have no choice.
As mentioned, bees are essential pollinators, and shouldn't be bothered unless we have no choice. In deciding whether we have a choice in any particular situation, there are a few things that we need to consider.
Do you Actually Have a Honeybee Problem?
Many people refer to any stinging insect as a "bee," but there are many other stinging insects, mainly various kinds of wasps, that resemble bees to the untrained eye. You may actually have yellow jackets, European wasps, paper wasps, or some other non-honeybee species. Wasps are not significant pollinators and can be handled by a local exterminator.
Are the Bees Presenting a Danger to People?
Bees are not especially aggressive unless they feel threatened, but they become very aggressive when that happens. Bees have their own language, and if a member of the colony believes that you are a threat, it won't be long before you find yourself surrounded by hundreds or thousands of bees, all with stingers at the ready.
The question then becomes: How much of a threat is any particular beehive? If it's off somewhere in the woods far enough away from your home or any trails that people use that it can be avoided, then probably they should just be left alone. If they're living in your porch or in your garage, on the other hand; or if you or anyone else in your household is allergic to bee stings, then obviously the bees need to be removed.
Are the Bees Inside your Home?
In nature, bees build hives in hollow trees and other protected areas. Now that hollow trees are becoming hard to come by, bees often build hives in void areas of homes. When this happens, the honey and wax can attract other pests and animals or cause damage and staining to your home; so we recommend that the hive be removed.
Rid-A-Critter provides non-chemical honeybee extraction in Birmingham, Anniston, Bessemer, Hoover, Moody, and in other nearby towns and cities in our Alabama service area.
Our non-chemical approach to honeybee removal begins with finding the bees, for which we use several techniques. Because the nest might be some distance from the holes that they use to enter and exit the building, we may use stethoscopes or infrared imaging cameras to help us find exactly where the bees are living. the minimizes the amount of sheetrock or other building materials we have to remove to get to the nest.
Once we find the beehive, we remove the bees, honeycomb, hive, honey, and anything else we find; thoroughly clean the area; replace the insulation if necessary; and patch the opening we made. We also look for how the bees got into the home and seal those opening up so any stragglers can't get back in.
Here are some pictures of honeybee removal work that we've come across in and around the Birmingham area.
For more information about honeybee removal or any of our quality services, please call us today for an on-site inspection and consultation.