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Why Honeybees Swarm in Spring

Spring is in the air! Warmer temperatures bring everyone out to enjoy the great outdoors, including honeybees. When Spring rolls around, Mary, Missy and Gail, our amazing bee phone call specialists, start to get some panicky calls from Dallas /Fort Worth customers about honeybee swarms.

Q: “Why is there a football size clump of bees hanging from my tree?”
A (Mary): “Sounds like you have a honeybee swarm, no need to panic.”

Q: “Please help me! There is a swarm of bees down the block what do I do?
A (Missy): “Take a deep breath you’ve called the right place.”

Q: “I see a ton of bees flying around outside my house. I’m scared.”
A (Gail): “Don’t worry. We can help!”

Spring gives rise to honeybee swarms. A swarm sounds scary, but it is just nature’s way of helping the bee population survive. All winter, bees have been holed up in their current hive living off the honey they have produced. When the weather begins to warm the colony starts to expand.

What is a Honeybee Swarm?

The queen bee is busy laying eggs this time of year, including worker and drone eggs. Soon the hive grows too big for only one queen bee and another queen is created. The second queen bee arrives when the hive has expanded so much that the workers can no longer smell the first queen bee’s pheromones she emits. Basically, if they can’t smell the first queen bee, they don’t know she’s alive so they create a new queen bee by feeding the future queen bee royal jelly. There is only one queen bee per hive so now a new colony needs to be formed. Usually the original queen bee will fly off with about half the colony and go find a new place to live. This is a swarm.

Little Giant Beekeepers gets many call about this phenomenon this time of year. People see a clump of bees hanging on a tree, branch or sometimes a car and the sight can be a bit unnerving. A swarm stops wherever the queen decides to rest. The group waits here while scouting bees go find a new place to make a permanent home. If you see a swarm in your yard or area you will want to keep an eye out to make sure the scouting bees don’t make your home, their home!

If you have a swarm around your house call Little Giant Beekeepers and we can talk about the next steps in protecting your home from a swarm moving in. We can come safely remove the swarm for a fee and relocate them to an apiary so you don’t have to worry about them moving into your structure…never fun for a homeowner! Call 972-980-0923.

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