Bee swarm in a tree photo


  • Honey bee swarms are usually not aggressive. If you find a swarm of honeybees on or near your property, don’t worry!
  • Bees are valuable! Please don’t use insecticide or call an exterminator.
  • Check out our resources below. Local beekeepers are usually happy to help you remove the swarm.
  • Honey Bees or Yellow Jackets? Sometimes yellow jackets and nests are confused for Honey Bee swarms. Taking a picture and sending it to the number above will help us quickly tell you if you have a swarm or a wasp problem. Setting out wasp traps in early March to catch the wasp queens will help solve problems at your August BBQ or relaxing in the back yard.

What does a honey bee swarm look like?

Honey bees swarms can land on a variety of objects and be located at varying heights. Clusters can be down low on a bush, spread across a fence, or high up on a tree limb. They will not have a built nest surrounding them, but rather a cluster of bees hanging from a limb, branch, fence or other object.

VIDEO: Capturing bees that have swarmed on a bush by Mark Adams of Elbe, WA – April 2015

Not sure that it’s a honeybee swarm?

Honeybee swarms are easy to identify. For one, there won’t be a hive of any type, just a large mass of bees clinging to an object. Also, a honeybee is different from a wasp and yellow jacket as identified by the pictures here:


Are Swarms Dangerous?

Honey bee swarms are not dangerous, but unless you are an experienced beekeeper, please do not attempt to disturb/displace the swarm. These bees are simply in the process of finding a new home and the beekeeper that you call will give them just that, a nice hive in a proper location!

Please do not spray the bees w/ pesticides, insecticides or even water! Wait for a beekeeper to come and take them away. These are typically gentle insects that are a huge benefit to the plants we have in our gardens and to the foods we eat! The only time you’ll encounter an angry bee (or other insect/animal for that matter) is if you disturb it.

In fact, if you have a swarm, consider yourself lucky to be experiencing this marvel of nature!


Bait Hives for Honey Bees — Cornell University Bulletin #187

PCBA - Wall Swarm 1


PCBA - Wall Swarm 2


PCBA - Wall Swarm 3



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