Dealing with a swarm!

Honeybee Swarms

Some Association members are willing to collect honeybee swarms in the South Staffordshire and North West Midlands areas as a service to the local community. There is no charge for this service but some beekeepers may ask for a small contribution for expenses and donations to the association are much appreciated.

Bear in mind a pest controller will charge for the service and this could be heading towards a £100.



1. Identify the insects involved – There is nothing more frustrating than being told that there is a colony of honeybees that have swarmed only to find, on arrival, that it is wasps or bumble bees. Use the following identification chart

2. If you are not certain what the insects are then you MUST call a pest controller. If they are later identified as honeybees the pest controller will call us or advise you to call us.

3. If the insects have been identified as honeybees then please identify your local swarm collector by your postcode  HERE!
Honeybees can swarm for several reasons one of which is to form a new colony. When young queens are about emerge in the parent colony the old Queen leaves together with a proportion of the workers. This swarm then lands nearby and forms a cluster to wait for scout bees to find them a new home. It is at this point that beekeepers capture the swarm, take it away and house it in a hive. The swarm is not dangerous while it is clustered as long as it is left alone. It is best, however, to call a beekeeper when you first find the swarm because if it stays in the same location for more than two days it can become bad tempered as the bees get hungry.
Please note:-

  • We cannot remove established colonies from buildings.
  • We cannot deal with wasp nests.
  • We cannot deal with bumble bee colonies.

Bumble bee information can be found here

This is the advice that the BBKA give to swarm collecting beekeepers. SWARM Collectors Protocol.

To contact a beekeeper willing to collect swarms click here