Never do these 5 things if you see a swarm of bees – best life

When people see bees, their first reaction is to panic – especially when they are in a swarm. Allan Bossel, owner and operator at Michigan Bed Bug Specialists, explains that bees reproduce because their numbers grow, multiply, and eventually move to new areas to start new hives. And thanks to the warmer weather, you might spot them more often. “You will see clump or ball shaped swarms of bees hanging from a tree, vehicle, shed, etc. for about 24 to 72 hours,” she says. Nancy Tedfordan environmental specialist with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

Of course, seeing so many bees at once can be a little scary – but they won’t get angry unless you disturb them. Knowing that they are not a threat to you can be reassuring, however, and you should still be properly prepared if you encounter one. We talked to the experts about the things you should never do if you see a swarm of bees.

Read this next: If you see this dreaded bug in your home, don’t say it, experts warn.

A man tries to keep bees away from a swat

This may seem obvious, but trying to strike at them increases the likelihood that they will bite you. “Crushing or hitting the bees will make them feel threatened and potentially cause an attack,” he says. Ben HiltonFounder and Editor at The Gardening Fix.

Bees are usually very gentle when they swarm, so there is no reason to chase them. While a single bee sting can be painful, repeating it all at once can be very dangerous, especially if a person has an allergy. They will definitely get more aggressive if you try to move them.

Heather Wilson, amateur beekeeper and founder of Hearl’s Honeybees, recommends staying calm and not moving. “Imagine the bees holding the do not disturb sign,” she advises.

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Bee pollinating flowers
Joya Photo/Shutterstock

If you come across a swarm of bees, do not attempt to harm or kill them. Miguel CamberosBee populations are dwindling, says SunVara’s Vice President of Operations, so killing an entire swarm can harm your local environment. If you grow plants, or have a garden of any kind, keeping bees around is actually more beneficial in the long run.

Bees are responsible for pollinating the food we eat, as well as trees, plants, and flowers. “Honey bees are protected in most states, and killing them is a crime punishable by hefty fines,” he says. Frank Mortimermaster beekeeper, president of the New Jersey Beekeepers Association, and author of Bee people and bugs they love.

Garden water spray bottle
SKT Studio / Shutterstock

Spraying bees with water is a very bad idea. Again, this will only agitate them and give them one more reason to bite you.

Wilson explains that the bees try to stay out of the rain as much as possible. “It changes their mood, and if they compare the splash of water to a sudden rain, they will quickly get upset,” she says.

Their wings are also affected by the water. “It’s worth noting that wet bees find it difficult to fly, causing them to rest on the ground which can be dangerous to children, pets, and even adults if you accidentally step on them,” says Hilton.

Dead bees on a wooden roof

Unlike actual pests, bees really do help your plants and plants thrive. “Pesticides are toxic to bees and will not only harm bees, but also other beneficial insects and the environment,” says Hilton.

Chemicals can also disperse the swarm, which is not a good thing when they are trying to settle down. He tells Hilton that the bees are swarming to protect his queen best life. If you choose to spray any type of pesticide or insecticide, you’re disrupting the swarm—and you really couldn’t choose a worse time.

“During a swarm, bees are alert, have heightened awareness and response to potential threats, which increases the risk of stings,” says Hilton.

Beekeeper Department of bee contract
pixel-shot / shutterstock

You could put yourself in harm’s way if you try to get rid of the swarm yourself – it’s definitely not a legitimate do-it-yourself project. It’s important to keep in mind, Mortimer says, that “a swarm will only stay in its temporary location for a few days, because once a new home is located, all the bees will fly away.”

If the swarm does not disappear after that short time, it is best to contact a professional beekeeper or pest control service. “Many beekeepers are experts with bees, so they’re the best people to contact,” Bussell says.

When you contact a beekeeper, remember that they may not remove bees for free. “This is their time, their equipment, their skills, and they may even have to buy or rent special equipment to remove you,” Tedford says. But it will be the safest option for you and your bees.

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