Honeybees Made a Home in my Siding! How Can I Safely Remove Them?

There are many different kinds of bees and wasps, so the first step would be to identify what kind of bees or wasps is making a home in your siding. An exterminator or beekeeper would be able to identify what they are. If an actual nest can be seen hanging on the house, they are probably wasps. If there is just a ball or swarm of just bees, or if the comb has been built inside a wall or protected area, they could be honeybees, but not necessarily.

It is important to ID the insect as honey bees are an important pollinator. These incredible bees are responsible for pollinating one sixth of all flowers in the world and at least 400 different agricultural plants. This helps produce $19 billion worth of the plants that we eat in the U.S. alone! Honey Bees are some of the main pollinators for these important plants that we eat everyday – Broccoli, Pumpkin, Cucumbers, Watermelons, and Apples among many others. Without these little critters, Apple Pie and Pumpkin Spiced Lattes would cease to exist! Not only do they help facilitate plant reproduction through pollination, but they also create a sweet liquid that many people use in cooking, as a sweetener for tea, and drizzled over desserts – Honey!

Without honey bees, the world would be a very different, less tasty and less colorful place.

After identifying if they are honey bees, a beekeeper can be called to remove them safely, depending on what season it is. During the fall, the bees are preparing for winter. They have their honey supply ready and all activity stops. The bees form a sort of ball around the queen and the bee larvae and vibrate their bodies in order to maintain a warm temperature all winter. At this point, removing the bees means that you could kill them! If the bees survive the winter, it is best to remove them when spring comes.  Once the bees are removed, the bee’s entrance should be filled to prevent other animals like ants, mice, and wax moths from entering.

There are many beekeepers that do local removals. Local beekeeper information can be found on the PA State Beekeepers Association website, at www.pastatebeekeepers.org under “Local Associations”, then “Associations and Inspectors.” This website also has an interactive map that provides contact information based on county area.

Here are some more contacts and resources for you to check out!

Robert Simonofsky – Beekeeper in Bucks and Hunterdon Counties, beemanrob@gmail.com

Karen Roccasecca – PA State Apiarist (has list of beekeepers that do removals) – kroccasecc@pa.gov

NY Times Article about Honey Bee’s Decline

Bucks County Audubon Society Pinterest Board – BCAS Fun Facts (find some information about the difference between Bees and Wasps)

Bees and their importance to the environment

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