Swarms (2017)

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This interactive map shows 2017 honey bee swarms that the Rugby Beekeepers Association branch is aware of.
Where information has been provided, it has been included and can be read by clicking the marker for that swarm.

Between April and July honeybees may swarm.  They do this in order to reproduce and increase their genetic diversity.  The old queen leaves the hive with approximately half the bees, and the bees left in the hive make a new queen.  The new queen will mate with between 10 to 20 drones from hives in the area and this ensures the genetic diverity of the new hive.  Meanwhile the old queen and her workers find a temporary resting place, usually within about 100m from the old hive, where they hang in a large football shaped cluster from a branch, on a wall or pole, or any other  likely resting place and send out scout bees to find a suitable new home.  They could remain in this location for a few hours or up to 3 or 4 days.  

If you see bees in this cluster please contact a beekeeper to come and collect them and rehive them, or they may find themselves an (unsuitable) home in someone's chimney or shed. To do this click on this link which will take you to the British Beekeepers Swarm page.

 

Identification

If you are not sure that what you have seen is a honeybee swarm, please also click on the above link which will help you identify what you have seen.

Need someone to remove a swarm?

A swarm of honeybeesIf you think you have seen a swarm of honeybees and would like to contact a local beekeeper to collect them go to the BBKA Do You Have A Swarm page. 

Please be aware that these beekeepers collect swarms on a voluntary basis.  They will not charge you for collecting the swarm, but they may ask for a token amount to cover their expenses.

The beekeeper's insurance does not cover them for collecting bees from high or dangerous locations.  Also, if the bees are already establishing a colony in the fabric of a building, it may not be possible to remove them.  If this is the case, and they are causing a real nuisance, they will need to be removed by a specialist Pest Control firm.  You can find details of a local firm on the web or from a local telephone directory.

 

 

Looking to acquire a swarm?

If you are member of this branch (Rugby) and you are looking to acquire a swarm of bees visit this page.


Beebase

Beebase News Web feed
  • Beebase Registrations
    19 August 2019
    Due to an IT problem there may be a delay in processing some Beebase registrations. Apologies for any inconvenience caused.
  • Reported Turkish bee has been identified as a UK native leafcutter bee
    05 August 2019
    DNA barcoding analysis of a suspect sample of Osmia spp. from Turkey has confirmed it to be a native UK species of leafcutter bee, Megachile centuncularis.

    The UK has a diverse variety of native bees and we encourage members of the public to seek identification of bee species through the many groups and societies with a particular interest in entomology such as; The ‘BWARS’ (Bees Wasps and Ants Recording Society) Facebook page, https://www.royensoc.co.uk/identifying-insects or https://www.nhm.ac.uk/take-part/identify-nature.html. Sightings may be recorded with the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology; https://www.brc.ac.uk/irecord/enter-casual-record.

    We encourage the reporting of non-native species identified by interest groups or members of the public. Guidance on where to report this information can be found on the GB Non-native Species Secretariat (GB NNSS) website (www.nonnativespecies.org/recording). The Government will then take action in accordance with the GB Invasive Non-native Species Strategy to minimise the risks they pose to our flora and fauna. We encourage everyone who travels abroad to check luggage especially if it has been kept outside during their trip. If you do spot a stowaway upon your return to the UK you should report it with the dates and places you went on holiday, and ideally a photo of the insect via the GB NNSS website.
  • Asian hornet in New Milton, Hampshire
    03 July 2019

    The National Bee Unit has today (Wednesday 3 July 2019) confirmed a sighting of an individual, female Asian hornet in New Milton, Hampshire, after it was reported by a member of the public. Based upon visual examination, the hornet is likely to be a queen.

    Further information can be found here.