Bumbling Bees

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With April’s showers coming to a close, May’s flowers are not too far behind.  While the flowers are sure to bring some color and vibrancy to spring, they are also sure to bring along bees…and lots of them.  From honeybees to bumblebees to carpenter bees, you’re sure to see them all, so this week, we’re going to teach you the difference between these flying critters, what to watch out for, and how to defend against them.

In the bee conversation, the most famous bee that will come up is the honeybee.  As the name implies, this bee is responsible for making the sweet honey that you enjoy by going around and collecting pollen and nectar.  They are social creatures, residing in nests that can be found on or in trees, and even on your attic or chimney.  Honeybees will sting if threatened, but their stingers are barbed, which means that the stinger will stay lodged in the skin, but the bee will die shortly after.  Since honeybees live in colonies and will sting if threatened, it is not recommended to take a baseball bat to their nest, should you find one on your property.  Instead, give us a call for assured (and safe) removal.

Another common type of bee is the bumble bee,  These guys are much larger than the honeybee, and are also much more aggressive.  While they go around and collect pollen and nectar, they tend to build their nests in the ground, but can be seen nesting by decks and roof beams.  If they are provoked, the bumble bee will chase after the aggressor, and since their stingers aren’t barbed, they can keep on stinging until the cows come home.  Due to this, a baseball bat is not the best method of extermination when it comes to bumble bee nests—let the professionals take care of that one.

Finally, the the other type of bee that you’re bound to see is the carpenter bee.  These bees are solitary creatures, fending only for themselves and for their young.  These types of bees are the largest out of the three, and get their name from eating into wood, where they will lay their eggs.  Carpenter bees are not harmless (they are not aggressive, and males are incapable of stinging) but they will chew through any type of outdoor wood furnishings you may have.  Over-the-counter pesticides or even a carpenter bee trap (which you can make yourself) will make short work of their eating habits.

The flowers are coming, along with the bees.  As with most pests, the golden rule with bees are so long as you don’t provoke them, they will not come after you.  However, should you find a nest on your property, take a step back and give us a call before you try to take care of it on your own, and find yourself fleeing from a bunch of angry bees!

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