About Bees in the Braintree & Sudbury Area

There are more than 200 types of Bee in the UK and they are typically viewed fondly when moving from flower to flower tirelessly pollinating as they collect nectar to take back to the hive. However in large swarms they can be a nuisance and species that sting can be dangerous. 25% of all Bee species are endangered so preservation is important. Moving problem bees to a more suitable location is the preferred method of dealing with them. We are members of the Bumble Bee Conservation Trust are have plenty of experience handling bees in Halstead, Braintree, Sudbury, Rayne, Hedingham, Yeldham and surrounding towns and villages.

Some Information On Bees

These are easy to identify ans they are rounder and larger than most other bees and feature the bright colour stripes they are famous for (although colours vary). They are commonly found nesting in places such as compost bins, bird boxes, empty burrows or underneath decking. They are social and therefore live in colonies and have an annual lifecycle. Female bumblebees (Queen & Workers) can sting and as their sting isn't 'barbed' the bee is not harmed if it stings you. This means it can sting repeatedly and in swarms can be dangerous. Those with bee-sting allergies must be extra cautious. However Bees in general only sting in defense so therefore may pose less of a risk than say wasps.

Tree Bees
Tree Bumblebees have a unique banding and so are easy to identify.The thorax is tawny to reddish brown, the abdomen is black and tail is white. Young male drones have yellowish facial fur until they mature. The queen, drones and workers all share similar colour patterns with size being the obvious difference between them. They are often found in empty bird boxes and other similar structures.

These bees don't often cause much hassle but feral swarms can be an issue. The sting on female honeybees are barbed meaning on mammals with thicker skin the sting will break off in the wound which kills the bee and causes more pain typically in the receiver of the sting. The like to set up nests in places like chimneys and wall cavities but sometimes will choose fence posts, trees or even cars for a temporary stay (normally a day or two) before moving on to a better suited and more permanent location. Honey bees are small and vary in colour from golden brown to almost black.

Solitary / Masonry Bees
Interesting to see bees that live alone and with their red/brown bottom and black body are quite easy to identify. You will rarely see these in large groups and can burrow through soft mortar to make a nest. They are usually little to no bother and can be left alone.

When it comes to large swarms / hives it goes without saying that unless you are highly experienced you should NOT attempt to control or remove them yourself. Please call us immediately for advice.

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