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Beekeeper with Bees

Seen a Swarm?

Swarm hotline 07561 147193

What will I need to do?

When you phone us we’ll ask you some questions, to ascertain the location of the swarm, ease of access and such like. We also need a fairly good description of where the swarm is, and roughly how high above the ground, to make sure we match you with the nearest swarm collector who can collect a swarm at that height. Some won’t climb tall ladders.

Prior to attending your site we will discuss the situation with you and try to ascertain the type of insect involved.

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Who will collect a swarm?

An experienced beekeeper who is confident they can do the job. We always follow the BBKA (British Bee Keeping Association) Swarm Collectors Protocol, which ensures swarms are collected in a safe and consistent manner.

What to do before the swarm collector arrives

 

Primarily, keep everyone, including pets, away from the swarm. Keep windows in the house and any outbuildings closed and minimise the time outside until the swarm collectors has arrived and assessed the situation.

 

What not to do before the swarm collector arrives

 

Do not try to move the swarm away by interacting with it in any way. There will be scout bees flying to and from the swarm, and they might become aggressive, and ultimately sting.

How long will it take to collect a swarm?

This is very dependent upon the swarm itself. The smaller the swarm, the quicker it is to collect most of the bees, as there are fewer to cajole into the collection box. Collecting the swarm might take two visits, leaving the collection box in situ over-night to encourage the last few bees to enter the box. If this does happen, then the Swarm Collector will return very early in the morning to collect the box before the scout bees start flying again.

Please note, that during the swarm collection process, it is not possible to collect every single one of the many thousands of bees that will make up the swarm. There will always be several bees that get left behind; be it due to their resistance to follow the rest of the colony into the collection receptacle, or indeed they may well be left at the original site of the swarm, if that is in a challenging position. Those bees that are left, will either fly off to find another colony locally, or they might well die off if the weather conditions deterioriate. Swarm Collectors will do their upmost to collect as many of the bees as possible, after all, every worker bee is a honey producer, but please accept that honeybees are wild animals, and as such, they cannot be coerced into complying with the wishes of swarm collector.

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How much does it cost?

Members of SWHBK are all volunteers and make no charge for collecting a swarm. It’ll usually take two visits to remove and collect them so it’d be kind of you to offer a donation towards time and expenses and, perhaps, a cup of tea, coffee, or a cold drink, if it’s a hot day.

What happens to the swarm?

Collected swarms are passed on to members of SWHBK and will normally be in their new home within 24 hours of collection.

What information will you need from me?

Your name, address, and telephone number if you need us to come to your property. This information will be stored in line with GDPR.

If the swarm collector does attend site, you will be required to complete a Disclaimer form. A copy will be brought by the collector for you to complete before work can commence.

Swarm hotline 07561 147193

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