Scroll down for information about honeybee swarms and how to deal with them. Then contact one of our members from the Swarm Catchers list at the bottom of this page.
Note: We cannot help with wasps, hornets, or other insect problems. Honeybees only, please.
Important information to consider before calling a beekeeper on our list:
● Mt. Baker Beekeepers Association publishes an annual list of members who are available to retrieve honeybee swarms from many Whatcom County areas. This is offered as a public service. While swarm removals are generally done at no cost, donations to the Mt. Baker Beekeepers Association are always welcomed: MBBA Donations
●Honeybee swarms are generally docile and harmless if not disturbed. Swarms occur in late spring and summer. A swarm is a dense cloud of flying bees which eventually settles in a tree or bush, then forms a tight cluster to stay warm and protect their queen. They are intent on finding a new home after having left their old, overcrowded home. Remember, while swarms may not be aggressive, there are always “guard bees” on duty. The guard bees will sting if the swarm is threatened. Leave the swarm for a beekeeper to deal with, or just leave it undisturbed and it will usually leave in a day or two. A clustered swarm is just stopping temporarily as honeybees do not fly at night.
●Our beekeepers service most areas of the Whatcom County. Please check to see that they service your area before calling. The sooner you call after sighting a swarm, the better the odds of successfully capturing it.
●Beekeepers will first ask a few questions on the phone to determine if the swarm consists of Honeybees. They are not prepared to deal with other types of bees, wasps or hornets. Honeybees are golden with black stripes. Wasps are bright yellow.
●Beekeepers capture swarming colonies of honeybees in order to replace hives lost over the winter or to increase the number of hives in their apiaries.
●Beekeepers may decline to capture a swarm if it’s in a dangerous location or inside the wall or roof of a building. Beekeepers are not responsible for property damage once you have asked them to remove a swarm. You may be asked to sign a permission form.
If you believe you have a genuine honeybee swarm that needs immediate attention, scroll down for the 2019 Swarm Catchers list to find a beekeeper who catches swarms in your area.
Note: Our 2019 Swarm List will be published soon. This is where you will find it for the 2019 Bee Season. Honeybee swarms begin appearing in Whatcom County by mid-April.