Between learning that bees are vital components to balancing the global ecosystem and the ever-popular Save The Bees movement, it can become something of a quandary to learn how to get rid of bees.
You don't want to harm the bees, but you also don't need bees that close to your house. And, as much as bees are important, we can all admit that bees can become quite the pests if given a chance.
Don't worry. We're here to help. Buzz through our guide to learn how to get rid of bees with an easy conscience.
Why Bees Might Be a Problem
Let's face the reality: in terms of insects, no matter how useful bees might be, they also aren't the friendliest of options with that stinger locked and loaded at all times. Irritate a bee and you will have regrets.
But all the same, there are several reasons why bees might be a problem. Sometimes, bees like to nest in the hallowed outer walls of your home, which is terrifying. Bees also tend to nest on porches, patios, sheds, and your favorite shady tree.
In fact, it seems bees have a frustrating tendency to build their nests in the most inconvenient of places. Aside from nests having the capacity to home hundreds of bees, nests are also difficult to get rid of and can cause structural damage to your home.
As a matter of safety, bees might also be a problem for people who have small children and pets or who are severely allergic to bee stings. Bees can also be a problem for the simple reason that you don't plan on being stung any time soon.
In any case, whatever the reason, bees can and have been a problem for everyone at least once.
What Can You Do to Get Rid of Bees?
Before you even consider dealing with your bee problem by yourself, you should make some calls to see if any local beekeepers are around to help you out.
Chances are, if you can get into contact with a beekeeper, they will jump at the chance to handle your bee problem - sometimes even free of charge. Seem too good to be true?
For any other pests, that might be the case, but since the global bee population is down to 3%, beekeepers are invested in making sure all bees survive.
But, if a beekeeper isn't an option, there are a few simple steps you can take before you learn how to get rid of bees.
Identify Your Bees
There are many, many different kinds of bees. Sometimes, it helps to know what kind of bee you are dealing with when you are learning how to get rid of bees.
A method that might work on one kind of bee might not work on another. Here are the most common bees that might be your problem:
How do you identify a bee? Well, if you can get close enough, the most common bees are all easily distinguishable from one another. Honeybees, for example, are rather large, while bumblebees are kind of fat and hairy.
If you can't tell what kind of bee you have by a single glance, you might have to be brave and hold a pollen-rich flower near the bees to attract them closer and get a better look.
You shouldn't need to worry about being stung if you hold still, measure your breathing, and try not to run away screaming.
Locate Bee Hive
In all honesty, it shouldn't be too difficult to find a beehive. They are distinct looking structures, usually like pitted, dirt-colored lumps in high locations.
Bees are day dwelling insects, so it's easier to find beehives at dusk when the sun starts to set, or late dawn when the sun starts to rise. During these times, you will be able to follow bees to their hives, where you will often see them in concentrated swarms.
Check Your State Laws
With the collapse of the global bee population, some states have created legislation that determines what you can do with your bees. Some states do not allow the use of bee-killing pesticides, while others protect hives that are not situated on homes.
To play it safe, do a quick check of your state's laws related to bees before any further action is taken. Plus, some local governments have free programs to remove bee nests that are in natural structures on your property.
Professionals might be your best option to get rid of bees. Besides beekeepers and government services, there are two types of professionals you can call on to deal with your bee problem: exterminators and bee specialists
Be warned, exterminators usually have aggressive methods, and exterminators aren't exactly cheap. Depending on the severity of your bee problem, using exterminators might be more trouble than they are worth.
As a rule of thumb, unless the bees are nesting in your house or number in the hundreds, exterminators should be a last resort.
Bee specialists are overall a bit nicer in how they deal with bees, preferring to smoke bees out or use another hive to draw your problem bees away.
Bee specialists are also unique in that many also offer repair services for any bee-related damage, such as house structure damage from carpenter bees.
Bee specialists also regularly offer warranties for their work, just in case bees return to the scene of the crime at a later date, which can save you money.
What Can You Do to Get Rid of Bees?
In an effort to protect the bee population as much as possible, we strongly recommend dealing with bees in a holistic, natural way. Like any other animal, there are ways to deal with bees that won't traumatize either of you.
Home remedies are good, do-it-yourself options that won't violate state laws or cost an exorbitant amount of money. All the same, learning how to get rid of bees usually depends entirely on the kind of bee you are dealing with.
Bumblebees are surprisingly territorial, so if you find their hive, be aware that you might be inviting stings. But there is a good, non-confrontational method on how to get rid of bees.
Bumblebees, in particular, are sensitive to scent, so spraying vinegar on the nest and any area where bumblebees are too close for comfort is a good day of warding bees off your property.
A spray that is equal parts water and vinegar will easily deal with your bumble bee problem.
Carpenter bees are curious creatures. As they are extremely sensitive to sound vibrations, you can get rid of carpenter bees by playing loud music near their nest. An old stereo and your favorite music will encourage carpenter bees to stay far away.
Carpenter bees are also responsive to strong citrus scents. You can use a citrus spray - orange, lemon, or lime juice and water - liberally on their nest, and the bees will stay away.
Getting rid of honeybees can be an adventure. Like bumblebees, this type of bee is not fond of vinegar sprays, so you can reuse that method with honeybees.
Placing mothballs near honeybee hives will also stink them away from your property. But honeybees can also be drawn away by appealing to their sweet side.
Place soda in a glass, moving the glass further away each day, to naturally draw bees away from your property - eventually, the honeybees will nest somewhere else. You can also put sweet, juicy fruit in a plastic bag and slowly draw honeybees away.
While some home remedies can get rid of specific types of bees, there are some methods that can help you get rid of all kinds of bees.
For example, no bee is fond of minty scents, so you might try spraying peppermint oil on window seals and doorways to keep bees out of your house.
Bees also don't like citronella candles, which has the added bonus in keeping mosquitos and gnats away from you as well.
Conclusion for How to Get Rid of Bees
Learning how to get rid of bees can be something of a journey.
It's important to remember that you have several professional options to deal with your bee problem, including government programs, bee specialists, and beekeepers; all three options will get rid of your bees without killing them.
But, if you are set on getting rid of your bees yourself, then you will need to identify the bee and select the right method to get rid of that breed.
No matter which method you use, always remember to wear protective clothing when dealing with bees and to be patient with bee removal methods.
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