Honey Bee Swarms - What To Do

If a swarm of bees arrives in your garden, don't panic! Here's what to do. First of all, try to ensure that they are honey bees and not wasps or bumble bees. A search for images on the internet can help you with this. If you think you've got honey bees, then please ring the Swarm Hotline on 07770 370132 and provide as much accurate information as possible, including:

  • A post code and address, plus contact name and number
  • Where the bees are situated. If they are in a tree, how far off the ground are they? Will a ladder be needed?
  • Do they present a possible danger to the public, e.g. overhanging a footpath or school grounds? 

A swarm collector will be able to come out and collect the bees. But please keep him/her updated - if the swarm flies off, please call them to let them know to save them making a wasted journey. 

The good news is, whilst a swarm can be a frightening sight, they are generally very docile and will usually not sting. A swarm left alone will only be in place from just a few minutes to a few hours and occasionally a few days. 

Declining honey bee numbers make swarm collection an important part of the work of bee keepers. The swarm collection service is provided free of charge by the British Bee Keepers Association.