To Bee or not to Bee

Perry Edge

Well-Known Member
Both the mailman and myself got a big shock one day when we walked right past a big swarm of bees on the sidewalk leading up to my house! I've had my share of critters in my yard over the years, but nothing like this! Luckily, my Dad had bees and I remembered that bees in a swarm are not usually aggressive. This proved to be true; I walked right up to the swarm and never got stung. The next problem was, do I let them eventually find a new home, or have them removed now?


I chose the latter, and through a little research I found a resource who knew all of the beekeepers in the county. She sent out an email and in no time three beekeepers contacted me, all eager to add the swarm to their collection. The transfer was very easy and nobody got stung.

If you or anyone you know ever have this problem, DO NOT use a pest control company. It is expensive, and they may kill the swarm. Instead, contact your local county horticultural department to find local beekeepers. Bees are under threat and are very useful, even essential. The entire almond crop in California depends on bees to pollinate the flowers, and they ship in vast amounts of bee hives to do the job.

While bees don't pollinate crotons (ants do) please look upon them as one of nature's best creatures, even if they do sting.
Perry I read that holding my breath, you really did the right thing. Bee's are at an all time low nation wide. We have two or three great blooming plants and it was the second bloom before we got or bees to return this spring I was worried sick. On of the citrus growers I grew up working for had hives and we had a mechanical spinner and put up two or three hundred quarts a year. I am to this day addicted to citrus blossom honey.
When I first moved to Florida we had a small swarm living in an old bat house in our live oak tree. Not knowing what to do I called a local pest control and had them come and take a look. They said they were not sure if it was the Africanized "killer" bees, so instead of removing the small hives they sprayed them down with something to kill them. I did not know better and visualized something like the photo below. Would do things very differently now that I have been here for a while and heard or seen nothing about these supposed killer bees. I am glad you mentioned to contact the local beekeepers or agricultural agency. I hate to kill anything that I don't have to (croton scale is not something I mind killing) and was not educated enough to make the proper decision at the time. Now I would know what to do. Even up in New England we were dealing with the issue of honey bees dying off, so the last thing I would want to do is kill them.