I don't know if this should go in the 'Bee Removal' forum, but that doesn't seem to be set up for this kind of question. Here goes.
Background: As posted earlier, my sister has a large swarm at her house up in a cedar tree. Swarm is approx. 25 feet up and the tree is readily accessible from the driveway. they are going to cut it down, so don't care if branches are removed to make capture easier.
Update: My brother-in-law did some Googling and found a beek in New York State, about 25 miles away. He called, spoke with the guy and was told that the charge would be 50 cents a mile, which seems reasonable, and $100 per hour to remove the bees with an estimate of 'several hours' of work. This was going to cost out to be over $500 to remove a swarm from a tree.
Question: I know that extractions and cut outs are expensive, given all the hard work involved for what often amounts to a queenless bunch of bees and a honey and sting covered extractor (person, not machine). But, I thought most beeks welcomed the chance to capture a swarm, especially a big one. I know being up in the tree makes it more difficult, but $500?
Does that seem reasonable?
Additional info: In defense of the guy they contacted, when they told him I also kept bees and would be done for their 4th of July party this weekend, he suggested they get a big box, tape it up with a small entrance, add some lemongrass oil from a local health food store, set it up on a table or chair near the swarm and try to capture it for me. Which is what they are trying to do right now. I thought that was pretty decent of him.