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Hi everyone.

Did my first removal yesterday. This was a swarm that moved into a house on Friday so was not well established yet (but dang were they working on it). This one caused a few questions from me for those of you that do removals:

Do you have certain weather limitations that you look for before you attempt the removal, i.e. min temp, sunny, etc.?

When do you call it good? Try as hard as I could, I couldn't get every single bee out. What do you do with the stragglers? Hope that they leave of their own free will?

Do you ever find the queen and cage her up or is it a roll of the dice? I think I got lucky and found this one scampering around in a box, but I didn't cage her.

How much do you guys usually charge for this work? The homeowner offered to pay me more, but I honestly didn't feel right taking it. I got a huge colony out of the deal, it was an easy reconstruction, and I got $350 out of the deal. Plus I learned some new stuff.

Sorry for the long-winded questions, but TIA for the answers.
 

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Possum Valley, TN Bee Wrangler
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As far as the weather, I like it at minimum a low of 60* F and sunny.

I call it good when the job is complete, all combs removed and the cavity scraped, bees all gone including the queen. Some times you will not see her but have vacuumed her up, the bees attitude changes when she is not around and kind of give up. Check all adjoining spaces to be sure they did not find a crack and move to a hiding spot. Repairs are made (if that is part of the deal) and sealed up with silicon caulk. Most of the stragglers will orient to the brood or vacuumed bees, what is left will find some where to go in a day or two.

I try to find the queen but do not always find her. If you do find her stick her in a cage or hair clip catcher to keep her safe. Stick her in with the brood.

I start at $300 and go up from there. Sounds like you did good. I do not count the bees as part of the payment, they may not make it through the winter.
 
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