Honeybee on pink flower

Brightwell Bees

Honey, candles and other products from our hives in Oxfordshire and Berkshire

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Honey bee swarm

Collecting a drenched swarm from a playing field in Brightwell cum Sotwell. Produced by Becky Moll.

Swarming is the natural process of reproduction for honey bee colonies. In the prime swarm, about half the bees leave the colony with the old queen, leaving a new queen developing at the original colony location.

If you think you have found a honey bee swarm

Firstly - check that they are honey bees
There is often a lot of confusion with other types of bees and wasps.
In April bees seen on the ground or in banks are frequently a mining bee, often the Tawny Mining Bee (see here for a picture)

Gathering a swarm_1

Collecting a swarm in a skep

In May/June it could be a Bumblebee. The Tree Bumblebee Bombus Hypnorum, like to make a home in bird nest boxes (see here for a picture).
Another good website for indentifcation is the Bees, Wasps and Ants Recording Society.

From early summer, wasp nests may be found. Please note, destruction of a wasp's nest should NOT be undertaken by untrained persons.

What do I do if I find a honey bee swarm. 

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