The BPU had some unexpected visitors on Friday, April 5th. One employee went to lunch like usual; however, when he returned, he noticed that a large swarm of honeybees had decided to make the BPU’s dwarf cherry tree its new home!- Who can blame them? These trees are beautiful this time of year! Realizing that the trees near our customer parking lot are not the best place for their new hive, the BPU called a professional to relocate them safely.

Enter Brenz Beez, who quickly came to the rescue. They came so quickly, in fact, that they did not hassle with putting on their protective suits, a decision Brenda from Brenz Beez says they regretted as she and her husband were left with multiple stings after they removed the branch with the bees and gently shook them into the bee box. The bees were relocated to what Brenda calls the “Paradise Farm,” an 18-acre piece of ground complete with native Kansas, pollinator-friendly plants. Brenda say this was their first swarm of the 2024 season. She says they get about ten calls of this nature a season. Brenda explained that Swarm season typically runs from late March to the beginning of June.

Swarm season is when the hive’s old queen leaves the hive with her group, consisting of defender bees, forager bees, and nurse bees. The old hive is then taken over by the new queen, and her colony that is also made up of defender bees, forager bees, and nurse bees. On average, queen bees used to live 4-5 years, but Brenda says that now, due to pesticides and other chemicals, their life span has dropped to an average of 1-3 years. The queen’s sole purpose is to lay eggs. Other bees in the colony only live, on average, 45 days. During their short life cycle, they move through the different roles within the colony. The defender bees are the oldest. They are the ones that protect the hive by stinging any threats. The middle-aged bees are the forager bees who collect nourishment for the hive, and the youngest bees are the nurse bees who care for the eggs.

Brenda says, “It is crucial to save the bees. Don’t kill them if possible. Bees are in danger and are so critical to our ecosystem. Call Brenz Beez or another professional beekeeper in your area to safely remove them.”
Thank you, Brenz Beez, for safely re-homing these bees!