Bumblebees in my house! Help!

Hello, I am looking for a few answers that I was hopign you could help me with.
I live in Ontario, Canada, and have discovered that I have a nest of bumblebees living in the wall of my house. I am sure they are bumblebees (not honeybees, carpentar bees, etc.). I am guessing they are living in the insulation on the inside of of the brick wall where the basement was finished ( I can hear them buzzing).
Unfortunately, many of them were making their way into the house. I have a dog, cat, and pregant wife who have never been stung so I had to call an exterminator.
The exterminator used a white powder called Ficom D and sprayed it into the hole in the bricks (from the outside) where the bees were going. After a few hours most of the bees that were outside of the nest gave up and moved on.
The exterminator (who was not too helpful in the advice department) used a misting bottle and sprayed something a little bit inside, close to where we thought the nest is but not right on it. We have a bunch of openings in the wall for access to the hot water pipes etc. The exterminator told me to get some screen door mesh and put it over these openings so the bees can't get out.
Well, I got half way putting up the mesh (about an hour after the exterminator left) when about a dozen bees came dropping out of the openings (about 1 every 5 minutes for about an hour). I killed them and eventually got the mesh up.
Just when I thought the worst was over, I went out for a few hours this afternoon and found 2 in the kitchen, 6 on the stairwell from the basement to the kitchen (near the door with a window in it), and another 5 in the basement. I opened the door and let the ones by the door fly out, and killed the other 10 or so. I reinspected the basement and put more mesh up and plugged a few other possible holes, but I can't be sure where they are coming from.
In summary I killed about 15 of them before the exterminator came, and about 30 of them since. Obviously, their hole to the outside is plugged with poison dust so they are trying to find another way out and making their way into my house even faster than before, when the odd straggler came in. It's nighttime now so they are not very active. Fortunately none of us have been stung.
Here are my questions:
1) It's been about 36 hours since the exterminator left. Have I seen the worst of the bees inside? How long should it take for them to die?
2) Is this a normal exterminator experience? I've spent $150 getting some dust sprayed in the wall, and have had to contend with a bunch of angry bees in my house, a ruined long weekend. Did I get the shaft? What does someone have to do or pay to get something done right?
Any thoughts or suggestions??
P.S. I know bees are very beneficial to the environment and are not aggressive uless provoked, but like I said I had no choice given that many were coming into my house, and with a pregant wife plus a curious dog and cat I had to do something. I hate killing them.
Thanks!
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On 6 Sep 2004 19:42:12 -0700, dirk snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Dirk Puslich) wrote:

I had a yellowjacket nest that I couldn't reach with instruments or chemicals. What I did eventually was to use an old badminton racquet to kill them as they flew into or out of their nest. Kill enough workers and the nest won't be able to survive. It took only three days of effort, with each session taking about 20 minutes because by 20 minutes there wouldn't be any insects to kill. A dead nest seems to be a deterrent against future nest building.
Using a badminton racquet was very effective because of the large striking surface. It had the right reach whereby hitting the insect was pretty much instinctive and unlikely to miss. I was able to hit two or three with one stroke and often strike another one on the recovery stroke. The insect was cut cleanly and never had the chance to send any alarm or chemical signals to the nestmates. There wasn't an instance where a yellowjacket tried to sting me or was aware of the killer racquet being used. Because they were cut so cleanly they were easy to clean up.
Like you said, anywhere else but in the house I would have gladly left them alone as some of God's creatures.
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I've used a vacumm cleaner hose near the entrance/exit left sucking for a few hours. All incoming and exiting bees ended up in the vaccum. I just sprayed a little insecticide into the hose and it took care of them.

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On 6 Sep 2004 19:42:12 -0700, dirk snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Dirk Puslich) wrote:
:) 1) It's been about 36 hours since the exterminator left. Have I seen :) the worst of the bees inside? How long should it take for them to :) die? It can be hit or miss dealing with bees inside a wall. Ficam is very effective treatment with bees, but if it didn't get to the heart of the nest it may be possible for them to just abandon the area they were using as an exit and exit somwhere else...sometimes the interior of the house. Even if the nest will die out on the first application, a number of the bees or in a protected cell turning into an adult...as they emerge they may continue to be seen until they die...might last a couple of weeks.
:) 2) Is this a normal exterminator experience? I've spent $150 getting :) some dust sprayed in the wall, and have had to contend with a bunch of :) angry bees in my house, a ruined long weekend. Did I get the shaft? :) What does someone have to do or pay to get something done right?
The surest way to know you got to the nest would be to have the wall opened up and to remove/treat the nest. You may pay over $400 for that...treating as you have done probably averages $100-$150, but if he used Ficam D, he used what is most thought of being the best to use in the PC industry and just treating by that method is probably the more common way to treat.
Lar. (to e-mail, get rid of the BUGS!!
It is said that the early bird gets the worm, but it is the second mouse that gets the cheese.
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Ortho Savin Sevin works the same Ive killed 15 nests. For only 6 $. Spray again if you wish but they will die. seal hole up with mortar when all are dead.
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I have heard of people putting a powered up mower over a wasp nest in the ground. I am surprised they didnt use smoke to just encourage the bees to move. you can use a vacuum cleaner ... put a few moth balls in the paper sack or dirt holder OR dont put it in the sack and dump the bees outside. a friend had a similar experience in her apt right before she moved out. I really do wonder about the nest full of honey and the fungus that will start to grow on the residue. Ingrid
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We have had a few cases of people with honey bees building nests in walls aand in a cieling. The nests were huge, especially the cieling one where it was so heavy it made the sheetrock sag about 4 feet down into the room. The people would find dead bees in the house and honey would drip from it. In all the cases they called some people who raised bees and they came and took the bees away. The people were left to clean up the hive. Personally I can't see why they left it so long it made the cieling sag to the point they couldn't walk under it. I imagine they had ants too with all that honey dripping around. It was on the news one night and the pictures of it kind of stuck in my mind, not to mention the sound of all those bees you could hear when the news crew were filming the hive.
Shell (who is allergic to bees)

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On 6 Sep 2004 19:42:12 -0700, dirk snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Dirk Puslich) wrote:

Bumble bees nests have 30 -40 bees each so it sounds like you have gotten most of them.

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Thanks everyone for your help so far. Here's an update of where things are, if you are interested or have any further thoughts:
1) It's now been 3 days (72 hours) since the exterminator left. The Ficam D was sprayed into the wall on Sunday. On Monday night I posted my first message after killing several bees.
3) On Tuesday (after 48 hours) I came home from work and found/killed another 12 or 13 bees. I called the exterminator and asked if this was normal. He said it could take up 4 days or so for them to go away. He also said that the hole shouldn't have been plugged (their mistake) and I should stick a screwdriver into it to make sure they can get out. I did this but I'm pretty sure it's still clogged with the Ficam D because the hole is so deep in the wall and he pumped tons of it in (and they are still coming into my basement)
4) Today (Wednesday) I went home mid afternoon and found 4 in my dining room, quite healthy (before my newspaper attack), and another 4 in the basement (right below the dining room where the nest is) quite sickly - floundering around on their backs - presumably from the Ficam D. I called the exterminator again and asked if this is normal. They were fairly dismissive and said "Oh, it can take at least a week, don't worry". Gee thanks.
This really sucks.
I am guessing that the bees that are coming out into my house now are new "hatchlings". They are almost all smaller workers. I killed two huge ones before the exterminator came (Queens??? Unfertilized Queens???)
Anyone have any words of wisdom, or think that the worst is over?
Cheers
snipped-for-privacy@radix.net (beekeep) wrote in message (Dirk Puslich)

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One thing I would suggest is not to use a newspaper to try and kill bees or wasps. In my experience, they are pretty hard to crush, and wacking at them just makes them mad.
A much safer method of dispatching bees or wasps is with a good pair of scissors. Just creep up on them, and *snip*, all done. A clean hit will cut them in half, making them harmless. And if you miss, you probably will barely even disturb them, while a partial hit is likely to cut off a wing so that they can't come after you even if they want to. If you are good, you can even cut them in half in midair!
This really does work. I've killed hundreds of wasps this way, and never had one of them come after me. In contrast, the few times I tried a rolled-up newspaper or flyswatter, they *always* came after me.
--
Tim Eisele
snipped-for-privacy@mtu.edu
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On 8 Sep 2004 13:41:25 -0700, dirk snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Dirk Puslich) wrote:
:) I am guessing that the bees that are coming out into my house now are :) new "hatchlings". They are almost all smaller workers. I killed two :) huge ones before the exterminator came (Queens??? Unfertilized :) Queens???) :) :) Anyone have any wo
It might be two weeks before all the pupating bees have emeregd...it will probably be the 3, 4, 5 each day...if you enter the home/basement and there are a lot all over the place would mean they exterminators only got close to the nest and now the bees have had to abandon there nest area to look for another.
Lar. (to e-mail, get rid of the BUGS!!
It is said that the early bird gets the worm, but it is the second mouse that gets the cheese.
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The smaller bees take care of the nest. There size has to do with their diet. Their size allows them to get around the egg/larva wax balls in the nest.
The dominant bee (the queen) is the largest. The rest are foragers.
Get a copy of the "The Humble Bee" by Sladen and read it. I couldn't put it down until I finished it. Simply fasinating.
beekeep
On 8 Sep 2004 13:41:25 -0700, dirk snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Dirk Puslich) wrote:

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A vacuum cleaner would pick up the stray bees. Closing the points where they acess the house would be the first step, putting pesticides in the house with a pregnant wife would not be a first choice. I think the pesticide resmethrin would have been a better choice than ficam but I am not an exterminator.
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My only episode of this type were honey bees who had taken up residence between the ceiling and second floor. An exterminator passed on the job and a bee keeper did no good either. I found the exit/entrance they were using and every day at dusk I would dust the inside with a garden duster with Sevin and sprinkle more at the entrance. It took a few days but it worked and when they dwindled to just a few bees, they left. Lotsa bee bodies on the ground.
I'm surprised you haven't been stung yet. Are you sure they are not carpenter bees? The look somewhat alike but carpenter bees do not sting. Thaey don't even have a stinger.
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snipped-for-privacy@dcr.net wrote:

Female carpenter bees do have stingers and they'll use them to defend their nests. It's the male carpenter bees who are without stingers. Carpenter bees are more solitary so you wouldn't be likely to see a nest of them anywhere although they do like to come back to where they were born and after a number of years, you can have a lot of them coming back.
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it right on a wasp nest without upsetting them. I like the 10% kind when I can find it.
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:) I'm surprised you haven't been stung yet. Are you sure they are not :) carpenter bees? The look somewhat alike but carpenter bees do not sting. :) Thaey don't even have a stinger.
It's only the male carpenter bee (other bees too) that has no stinger ..the females can sting but normally won't.
Lar. (to e-mail, get rid of the BUGS!!
It is said that the early bird gets the worm, but it is the second mouse that gets the cheese.
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I was saddened by the aweful situation you and your wife are in. I hope you're all okay. Bumble bees are generally very easy going compared with honeybees and some wasps. They'd have to be really harassed before stinging. I'm sure bumping against a window all day would have pissed them off. They probably wouldn't have gone into your house at all if their nest entrance wasn't plugged.
At this time of the year, as you've noticed, new ones are emerging from their hives to mate and hibernate. Bumble bee colonies, unlike honey bee colonies are formed yearly. They leave their nests in autumn to mate then hibernate. They usually hibernate under trees and shrubs so in future, wait until October when all the new bees will have emerged and left. Once gone, get some expanding foam and caulking to seal their former nest entrance.
Here's a good site for info on bumble bees:
http://www.bumblebee.org /
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I had a similar problem with a nest next to my patio door. The nest was under the siding and the entrance was close to the ground. I placed the suction part of my leaf blower at the entrance to the nest. The leaf blower would suck them up before they came back in or just after the left. After about an hour my patio was filled with bee parts. It took about three days with one hour at a time, by the third day the bees coming out were very small. I'm not a bee guy but I guess they started to pannic, sending any capable bee out to see why no one is coming back. Good Luck
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Thanks again everyone for your thoughts. Today's update is that I went home at lunch and killed a total of 4.
#1 in the dining room above where the nest is - he was quite slow and dazed.
# 2 was on the stairs down to the basement - he was quite lively but didn't escape my duct-tape/newspaper smacking stick.
# 3 was dazed and floundering on the floor in the basement.
#4 dropped down from where the nest is - not dazed but I got him when he landed on the floor.
From the dining room when I put my ear to the floor I could hear what I can only describe as a "crunching" or "munching" sound from the nest - like someone chewing popcorn with their mouth open.
I'm half-tempted to drill a few smaill holes in the drywall around the nest and blast it with raid or that Sevin dust people were talking about, but I'm not sure if that's a good idea or not, given that the exterminator already put in some Ficam D.
I'll keep you posted.
snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (mike60510) wrote in message

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