Beekeepers are often approached about honeybees, bumblebees and wasps, especially in the spring and summer months. As someone who has been called out many times an ideal callout is to a swarm about the size of a rugby ball hanging from a branch about 2 metres of the ground – but it does not always happen that way.

I have been called out to swarms that have about 10 bees – that is not a swarm. A swarm will be over 1000 bees and can be as many as 20,000 bees. They may not all be flying but may have grouped in a tree or on a wall – or anywhere else that is convenient.

I have been called out to wasps. No they are not bees and I don’t have the tools to deal with them.

I have been called out to bumble bees. No they are not honey bees and I don’t have the techniques to deal with them.

But if you are not sure then give one of a ring and we will be happy to advise. I would rather have a call out to a cluster of wasps rather than miss a swarm of honey bees.

The BBKA page has information on identifying honey bees.

swarms in may 020

Dorchester and Weymouth Beekeepers have volunteers that make themselves available during the swarming season to give help and advise and if appropriate will take the swarm away for you.

Mike Hill (DT1) 01305 257984
Stephen Potts (DT1) 077 406 47 945
Michael Clarke (DT2) 01305 267611
Duncan Fergusson(DT2) 01300 341979
Nick Gill (DT2) 07821 387346 or 01305 267353
Penny Gostelow (DT2) 01300 341135
Chris Slade (DT2)  07773 387987 or 01300 320777
Marc Watton(DT2) 07828 591153 or 01929 406117

Nick Knight (DT3) 07427 986224 or 01305 834370
Andy Riley (DT3) 01305 833566
Richard Norman (DT4) 07813 287729 or 01305 786585
Nicky Payne (DT5) 07875 588906 or 01305 822609
Andy Ranson (DT4) 01305 770730
Sally Leslie (DT5) 07530 135131 or 01305 823043
Dennis Clemens (BH20) 01929 463474

hardy ave june 08 002