Spring is typically when bees reproduce and look for new places to call home and build beehives.

bees – like most animals – will not attack or sting unless they feel threatened.

“If one encounters a lone bee, it is probably just looking for food and water and they should allow it on its way,”

“A lone bee hardly poses a fatal threat to anyone and is unlikely to sting someone who is calm and does not swat at or disturb the bee in any way.”

Bee colonies, on the other hand, can be identified by a large swarm settling to form a clump near a water meter, irrigation meter, pool pump, air vent or roof tiles where they intend to move in.

This is a swarm that had just split from an established colony to set up a new colony. These swarms are quite weak at times due to travel and are less aggressive than an established colony.

If one encounters an established colony (mostly in trees and out in nature) it was best that they be left alone. Established colonies are more aggressive, especially when they have a lot of honey to protect.

Bees communicate with each other by releasing a substance that influences the entire swarm’s behaviour, and so if they feel threatened, they will call for “back-up”. This will lead to all of the bees coming out of the colony to attack the threat.

Safety tips:

  • Don’t stand in or disrupt the bees’ flight path as this will be seen as a threat.
  • When the swarm does need to be removed, please contact a registered and reputable beekeeper to remove and rehome the colony.
  • Don’t gas, fumigate, burn or cement the beehive.
  • bee removals done by reputable beekeeping organisations were usually done at night, because all the bees are home then, and they are a lot less aggressive in lower temperatures.
  • The brood (eggs), honey and comb will be cut and placed into frames of a brood box (beehive) before the bees are then put into their new beehive and transferred to an apiary (bee farm) where they can live, repopulate and prosper.
  • Bees play an important role in the pollination of plants, and we need them to ensure that the crops we harvest for food are reproduced.