Bees become a pest when they establish a nest too close to human habitations. With the danger of territorial behavior and frequent stings, it is sensible to seek professional bee control when bumblebees, honey bees or carpenter bees invade any Bristol home or business.
The most frequently encountered bee species in Bristol include the bumblebee, honey bee and carpenter bee. Bumblebees are fat and round. Their bodies are exceptionally hairy, and they are adorned with yellow-and-black stripes, which help to identify them. Honey bees are smaller and have far less hair. Additionally, their stripes typically are yellow and brown. Carpenter bees come in much more varied colors like green, purple, blue and black. They may measure between one-half and one inch in length.
The nutritional needs of bees are met through substances like pollen and nectar, which may be collected from the blooms of trees and plants. Some bee species are equipped with a basket on their legs that facilitates the collection of these items. Nectar is one of the main components in honey, which also is a staple food in the bee diet.
Pollen, nectar and honey are sweet substances, and this preference for sugary items attracts bees to many human foods. Cakes, pies, cookies, syrups, jams, juices, sodas and more are all likely to be consumed. Bees also may seek sauces and salad dressings as well as pet foods.
Each bee's preferred habitat is based on their species. Bumblebees are ground dwellers that may live in an abandoned animal burrow. Alternatively, they may excavate around the base of a wood or yard debris pile to make a home. A porch or the area close to a foundation are other likely places. Honey bees are more likely to choose a high location like the eaves of a building or the branches of a tree for their nesting site. Wall voids similarly may make a good spot for a hive.
Carpenter bees excavate into wood to build a home. They prefer unpainted, untreated wood because it provides easier digging. Their homes can be quite complex with polished tunnels and chambers to protect them from the elements and provide them with a place to raise young.
PROBLEMS WITH BEES
When they restrict themselves to the garden, bees are beneficial. However, when they build their nests either too close to or within a human habitation, the problems multiply. The chances of a stinging encounter become impossible to ignore, with several incidents perhaps occurring in a short time.
Moreover, the location of the nest itself may prove problematic. Bees can be territorial with respect to their nest. When it is positioned close to a door or walkway that people frequently use, the situation quickly becomes difficult. Bees may also build a hive in a wall void or other interior space. This strains the structural supports in the building, and an abandoned hive also is a cause for concern. It rots when it is no longer being maintained, and this can lead to extensive mold and mildew problems.
Bees tend to be social insects that work cooperatively in large colonies. Worker bees are assigned the important role of foraging for food to feed the colony. Alternatively, they may be assigned to constructing or maintaining the hive itself.
Most active in the daylight, it is far less common to encounter bees after dusk. They return to their hive for the night, and their behavior tends to be more docile during these hours. Still, bees may become aggressive when they believe that their nest is threatened.
This is particularly true during the day when bees are active. More than one person has unwittingly stumbled upon a beehive only to be stung multiple times. Farther away from the hive, attacks are less likely. Bumblebees are particularly recognized for their docile nature.
In general, bee stings are not a serious concern. They may be painful for a few hours, but medical intervention is rarely required. A person who receives multiple bee stings may need to see a doctor because of the risk of a possibly severe adverse reaction.
This also is true for individuals who have an allergy to bee stings. Their reaction, referred to as anaphylasix, may include symptoms such as tightness in the throat, labored breathing, rapid heart rate, vomiting, low blood pressure and hives. People with a known allergy will want to have a remedy on hand at all times when an infestation is underway. Anyone who experiences one or more of the symptoms of anaphylasix should seek immediate medical attention.
SIGNS OF AN INFESTATION
The following signs are indications that professional bee control may be a necessary:
• Being "dive bombed" by bees when venturing outdoors
• Discovering a beehive somewhere on the property
• Finding an inordinate number of bees inside a building
• Hearing buzzing and rustling behind walls
• Noticing increased insect activity around a crack or hole in a building's exterior
• Large numbers of flying, buzzing insects gathered around a building's eaves
To help prevent bee issues the following precautions should be utilized:
• Place tight lids on all outdoor garbage cans
• Regularly rinse out garbage cans to keep them clean
• Inspect building exteriors for holes or cracks that may provide access to insects
• Routinely check for signs of new hive construction in and around buildings
• Repair holes in window and door screens
• Do not allow doors or windows to remain open without a screen
• Do not keep pet food in the open
• Keep food indoors during barbecues
• Repair all plumbing and sprinkler system leaks as they are discovered
While the occasional sighting of a bee in the garden is nothing to be alarmed about, having a hive on the property is another story. This is a particular concern when the hive is hanging from a human habitation or is located within a cavity in a building. The chances for a painful encounter increase exponentially, and this can be especially dangerous for anyone with an allergy.
Controlling bees in any environment or location can be challenging and difficult. For greatest effectiveness, bee species should be properly identified, and then the hives should be located and properly removed. This should be conducted by an experienced certified exterminator.
SafeGuard Pest Control, LLC. is a professional pest control provider with years of experience in safe, bee identification and removal. Using proven processes, SafeGuard can ensure our clients will enjoy a pest-free home or business.