bees in loft - anything to worry about ?

On 07/06/2013 18:12, Huge wrote:

A friend in Berkshire had a hornets nest a foot above her back door. Not one ever came in the house, or came anywhere near the occupants (including 2 young children). They didn't seem to go through that dopey stage in the autumn either
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I was walking past a hornet's nest last summer about 10 yards away and got stung - ended up in A&E.
Jonathan
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On 07/06/2013 17:25, Rick Hughes wrote:

There are 30+ bees native to the UK. While you may find honey bees in colonies of 100,000s most social bees will have colonies of 200 or fewer.
I have mason bees (nothing to with masonry) which are completely harmless and safe with kids (they do have a minor sting but are ultra docile). They don't swarm or have a queen because they are solitary, although many hundreds will nest in the same location. They don't produce honey but arguably they pollinate more plants than bees kept for commercial purposes.
http://www.admac.myzen.co.uk/bee http://www.admac.myzen.co.uk/bee2/
My collection hasn't done too well this year - one hot spell and a lot emerged followed by a couple of weeks of very cold and wet weather. Of the potential thousands of bees in the tubes I currently have a few dozen working hard providing for next year's generation.
They make five or six chambers in each tube using mud (red mason) or chewed up vegetation (blue mason) and lay an egg in each with a large stock of pollen as food for their offspring.
--
mailto:newsadmac(dot}myzencouk

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On 07/06/2013 18:48, alan wrote:

Been a lot of Bee rustling in this area ... people turn up at their hives, open them up to find the central frames have been stolen.
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On Fri, 07 Jun 2013 17:25:53 +0100, Rick Hughes wrote:

Again they'll only have a go if you threaten them. Screaming, shouting and waving ones arms trying to knock 'em out of the air is a threat. Just sit quietly but keep an eye out for 'em so you don't accidentally squish one. They'll fly about for a bit but if they don't find anything interesting, like food, they'll soon buzz off.
Wasps will also get through a significant number of garden pests as well. So unless they have decided to build their nest in an inconvenient location let them live.
--
Cheers
Dave.
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On 07/06/2013 19:58, Dave Liquorice wrote:

My standard thing with a wasp is to hit her _away_ from anyone - this seems to scare them and they fly off. My dad's trick was to clap his hands on them, then immediately open his hands, letting the dying wasp drop before she can sting. I never liked that approach :)
Andy
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If they sting *humans* they die due to our thick skin. They can happily sting other insects and get away with it.
--
Tim

"That excessive bail ought not to be required, nor excessive fines imposed,
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Use this for identification
http://www.bbka.org.uk/help/do_you_have_a_swarm.php
If they are bumbles then they could be in an old mouse nest. No chance of anything but a thimble full of honey. Maximum number of maybe 50 bees.
If they are honey bees then they will be in their thousands and won't survive without the aid of a beekeeper (the varroa mite that came to the UK in the early 1990's and is all but endemic ensures that all unmanaged colonies will die after a couple of years)
See if you can spot where they are accessing the roof space. If you have blocked their previous access point then they could re-emerge anywhere.
You might have just seen a scout bee from an existing colony about to swarm and looking for a suitable cavity.
If there is any wax or honey from a previous infestation and the bees can small it then it will attract a swarm, so don't be surprised if you end up with a huge lump of bees hanging from the eaves in the next few weeks.
If they are established in the roof space and causing no harm then leave them, and check again next March /April and see if you can see any activity. If they don't survive the winter then seal off any external access otherwise you could get another colony invading and the resulting nest could be extremely heavy and unstable. Leave it long enough and you might even end up with a collapsed ceiling or soffit with honey oozing down the walls.
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On 07/06/2013 12:53, Jethro_uk wrote:

Possibly a masonry bee? Anything like this:
http://flic.kr/s/aHsjFtwsND
(last pic)
Rob
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On 07/06/2013 21:57, RJH wrote:

The other pictures are of the damage that the bee caused in the loft.
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On 08/06/2013 11:59, alan wrote:

I wish :-)
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Have a look at J P the bee man cutting beehives out of buildings on you tube
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On Fri, 07 Jun 2013 11:53:51 +0000, Jethro_uk wrote:

Thanks for all the replies, folks. Having had a chance to watch further (I was amazed that it seems the bees can squeeze through the soffit vent - I thought they were designed to prevent this) I'm as certain as I can be that these are bumble bees - I saw a couple with full pollen baskets.
So in the absence of any nuisance, I'm happy to leave alone ...
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