Report an Edmonton Bee Swarm or Colony
Report an Edmonton bee swarm by calling or texting seven-height-zero, two-three five, zero-two-two three. Not sure if you have honeybees? Read below or take our quiz.
Honeybee Swarming and the Edmonton Swarm Catchers
Swarming is a natural honeybee behaviour that occurs when a colony divides in two. When a healthy hive gathers enough resources, the queen and two-thirds of her workers will leave in search of a new home. The bees that leave the hive are called a swarm. The remaining bees will raise a new queen and continue at the original site. Swarming is how one honeybee colonies reproduce.
Once a swarm has left the hive, they’ll form a cluster (bivouac) and send scout bees into the surrounding area in search of a suitable cavity to build a new home.
You almost certainly have a honeybee swarm if you see a cluster of thousands of insects. Native bees and wasps do not exhibit this same swarming behaviour.
Once identified, contact me at the number above, and we will organize a member of the Edmonton Bee Swarm Catchers list to come out and safely relocate the honeybee swarm free of charge.
If a colony of honeybees has moved into your home, they will be less obvious and thus more challenging to identify. Honeybee colonies build their homes in hollow cavities. When occupying a building, honeybees are usually found inside empty walls, behind soffits, inside vents, or in the attic. You typically won’t find honeybees at ground level. Bees entering at the base of the building or under a concrete slab or sidewalk are almost always bumblebees (see below).
Colonies contain tens of thousands of bees, so you should notice lots of traffic entering and exiting the building. One or two insects at a time might indicate that you have bumblebees or wasps.
Please note that blocking off the entrance to a honeybee colony is not advisable.
If you have a honeybee colony living in a building, please get in touch with us. Depending on the location and ease of access, a member of the Edmonton Swarm Catchers may be able to relocate the colony safely. This service, referred to as a cutout, may have a cost.
Native Bees and Wasps
Other flying insects like bumblebees and wasps tend to have small colonies, build paper nests (wasps) or live underground (various species). Visit the Alberta Native Bee Council or Insects of Alberta to learn more about Alberta’s 300+ native bee species.
Unlike honeybees, Alberta’s native bees and wasps have annual life cycles and tend to make small, non-intrusive nests. If possible, learn to live with your native wasps or bees. If you have kids, turn your resident insects into a research project. Native bee and wasp colonies die at the end of the season; at this point, you can remove to nest or close off its entrance.
Do You Have a Swarm or Colony of Honeybees?
Complete the 3-Minutes Identification Quiz.
If you’re unsure if you have a swarm, colony of honeybees, bumblebees, wasps, or something different, complete this 3-minute questionnaire. Answer the questions as best as you can. The questionnaire will offer suggestions upon completion.