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A swarm of bees in a tree.

YouTube: Rescuing a Feral Bee Swarm

It’s spring, evidenced by the sudden appearance of bee swarms everywhere. I’ve received 3 requests from friends in the last 2 weeks to help find someone to rescue a bee colony that has swarmed into their backyard, water meter, or nearby tree. And then one showed up at Gardenerd HQ.

Bee swarm rescues should be done by professionals, or at the very least, a beekeeper who has all the proper equipment on hand: A bee suit with veil and gloves (although bees are most docile when swarming, since they have no home to protect), a smoker, and a swarm box (40 liters in size). A swarm box makes it easy to transport bees to a new hive.

Wanna see how we did it? Watch the show:

Rescuing a Feral Bee Swarm

Bees are a great addition to any home garden, as long as you have room for them, provide a water source, and commit to inspecting your bees every month. The reward is higher yields and of course, honey.

Freshly harvested honey in gift jars

The colony above went to a friend who has an empty hive just waiting for a new colony of bees.

Want to learn more about beekeeping or how to create a habitat for bees in your garden? Watch all the videos in our Plants for Pollinators Series on Youtube. Or read these posts:

Installing a Swarm Box

Biodynamic Beekeeping with Michael Thiele

Plan Your Bee-Friendly Garden

Next time you see a swarm, avoid calling an exterminator. Call a beekeeper to perform a rescue. It is generally not free, especially if they have to cut out your wall to remove the bees. But they will preserve the colony and re-home it in the proper place. And if you’re lucky enough to be able to keep one for yourself, enjoy the benefits of bees in your garden every day!

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