If you have an unwanted swarm of bees on your property, please call one of our local beekeepers. We can inspect the swarm and remove it safely to a hive where the bees will have a chance to flourish.
Please note: If the beekeeper is not immediately available, leave a message and they will call you back as soon as possible. Please try to work with only one beekeeper at a time, but if you call more than one, let them know that you’ve contacted other beekeepers as well, and who you’ve contacted. It helps prevent long drives to a swarm that has already been caught.
|Albert (Santa Cruz)|
|Ian** (Santa Cruz mountains)|
|Jeff** (Santa Cruz and beyond)|
|James** (all of Santa Cruz County)|
|Bodo (Davenport to Half Moon Bay)|| (mobile)
|Vicki (Watsonville, La Selva Beach, North Monterey County)|
|Emily (All of Santa Cruz County and further north towards San Jose)||Cell:
|Amanda (Santa Cruz)|
** also extracts bees from walls and other structures
For extractions and removals in neighboring areas, please refer to these nearby organizations:
- Gilroy Beekeepers Association
- Santa Clara Valley Beekeepers Guild
- Beekeepers’ Guild of San Mateo County
- Monterey Bay Beekeepers – Anarchist Beekeeping Collective
- Alameda County Beekeepers Association
When you call a beekeeper to collect a swarm, please have the following information available:
- Where are they? – e.g. Up in a tree (how high), in a bush, on a fence, in the eaves of a house?
- How many are there? How big is the cluster? Common descriptions are “size of a basketball, volleyball, trash can”, etc.
- How long have they been there?
- Are there still lots of bees in the air?
- Are they honeybees? (Many calls are actually for paper wasps or yellow jackets. The beekeeper should be able to help you determine this.)
- Is it in a public place?
Removing a swarm of bees from a tree or the outside of a building is relatively simple. However, if bees have taken up residence inside a wall or roof, the extraction procedure becomes much more complex and usually involves cutting into the wall to remove bees and comb. This may require re-construction after the extraction is complete. A beekeeper working on an extraction will also sometimes need to make multiple visits to the property to ensure that all bees have been captured.
Many beekeepers will capture a swarm for free, however, that should be discussed with the beekeeper beforehand. Extraction of a colony from walls or other space usually involves a fee, as it takes much more effort and time on the part of the beekeeper. Discuss this fee with your beekeeper before you engage him/her, and also discuss whether that fee includes reconstruction.