Swarms of Bees

A colony of bees will swarm as this is the only method in the wild that another colony of bees can be created.

At some time between the end of March and the end of July (when the number of bees in a colony is large enough) the queen bee with several thousand workers flies out to find a new home. This is a swarm.

Normally a swarm temporarily settles on a branch of a tree or in a bush or sometimes on a wall or a fence within 50 to 100 metres of its original nest. It then stays there until scouting bees have found a new nest site (usually a hole in a tree). The swarm will then fly directly to the new nest site and make a new home.

Swarms are normally noticed when they are hanging in a tree or bush. A swarm looks like a large teardrop varying in size from a rugby ball to something 2-3 times that size (examples of swarms are shown in the accompanying pictures).

Generally bees in a swarm are not aggressive. Before they left their original nest the bees will have eaten a lot of honey which keeps them calm and peaceful.

Beekeepers are keen to capture a swarm of bees as they can create a new colony in one of their beehives.

If you think that you have a swarm in your garden and would like to have it removed then please telephone our swarm liaison officer as detailed below.

Swarm liaison officer

Clare Tilly
Call: 07926 202323

N.B. As we are volunteers, there will not be a charge but a voluntary donation of £25 is highly appreciated to cover this service which incurs labour, fuel and material costs.