i received a call from a woman with a swarm on the ground in her front yard. it had been there for 24 hours or so before she called. i went out to look at it this morning, and found that the bees had now moved from the front lawn, into a crevice above her bay window and the overhang just above it (raised ranch), and have accessed some sort of cavity (in between floor joists, probably).
obviously this is much more difficult than scooping up a swarm, and if i decide to take on the task of removing the bees there will be a fee involved.
my question is, what is the best way to go about it? trapping will take too long. i think i can pry off the soffit and vacuum the bees out. it doesn't seem likely that they will be very well established at all since they've only been there for 24-48 hours.
Actually if the swarm literally just moved in you can probably get them to abscond pretty quick by doing a trap out. They will start comb pretty quick with the honey they bring with them. But, they will also need quite a bit of new nectar to keep going if you put the trap out up with in a couple days of moving in they should abscond pretty quick once they stop receiving new nectar back into the hive.
Its probably worth a try for a couple weeks. If it doesn't work do the cut out then.
thanks for the quick replies. a trap out was my initial thought as well, but the point of entry isn't a small hole, it is 3' long, 1" gap between the bay window and the soffit. i know i could still block most of that gap, but i think ensuring that my intended exit is the only exit is going to be difficult.
i'm going to stop by this evening after work, and will update with what i decide to do.
mldrenen...If they just moved in, heavy smoke and some bee-go will likely make them leave that space. Watch the march...find momma...put her in a box, the bees should follow. Or vacuum them as they march out. Gotta find momma though! As others have said, you can pop the soffit off, but if there is as much a gap as you say, some heavy smoke should be enough. If your sole purpose is to take home free bees, this isn't ideal... If you get paid, and keeping the bees is a bonus, then you're all set.
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