This is a honey bee removal job I recently did in Augusta GA. I was amazed at how many dead bees were on the floor and window of the room. There literally could have been 10,000 or more dead bees. The ceiling had a softball sized hole where the bees could get through. Since bees are attracted to the light, they were flying to the window thinking it was an exit point. Once seperated from the hive and in the confined space of the room, the bees died quickly.
Unlike yellow jackets, honey bees do not normally make holes in drywall. The only time this might happen is if the bees die out. Then wax moths can invade and will chew into drywall and wood. This chewing, combined with the exposed fermenting honey dripping down, can compromise the drywall and eventually create holes as seen in the video. Like I said, the bee problem was ongoing and likely many years old. There was evidence of other colonies of bees being here before this one.
A tricky part about this bee removal was the fact that the bees were both in the ceiling and the wall. Having the bees build honeycomb in both places is uncommon. Because of my experience as a beekeeper and as a bee removal exper, I have learned to double check everything and make sure all the comb is removed. I definitely do not want their to be problems in the future.
A couple of last things to note. When I do drywall repairs, I will put the drywall back and do the first coat of mud. When I do the repairs I am able to guarantee that the bees will not return to the same spot. I especially like to do repairs if the house is occupied. In this case the house was vacant, so not as big of a deal.
On the outside I used expanding foam to seal the entry point. I prefer to use steel wool and high quality caulk because it holds up much better. The gap was just to big to be able to use those methods of sealing though. Expanding foam will usually hold up for a year or two before deteriorating. The best option here, would be to repair the siding in the near future and then use caulk between the brick and wood siding to permanently keep the bees out.
Toward the end of the video, you can see the newly relocated honey bees crawling into their new hive! Since it is sometimes difficult to tell if I got the queen, the bees will be checked later, after they have settled down, to see if the queen survived and is laying well. Most of the time the bees make it. If for some reason the queen is dead, the remaining bees can be combined with another hive. To ensure the best survival rate of the relocated honey bees, they are treated for pests and mites with natural methods, and also feed sugar water to help them get through the coming winter.
Thanks for watching and stay tuned for more bee removal videos!