Honeybees Swarms Appearing Early This Year
Honeybee swarms are not just affecting baseball fields and public buildings. An influx of bee activity and swarms are occurring in households and commercial structures within the geographic regions where honeybees inhabit.
Arizona has been in the news lately because of a recent bee attack during an ill-prepared bee removal. And this week, a large swarm disrupted a spring training baseball game in Scottsdale, Arizona. The game between the Arizona Diamondbacks and San Francisco Giants was delayed for about 40 minutes after a black cloud of bees swarmed into right field, causing the Diamondbacks right fielder to sprint to center field.
Eventually the bees moved toward the Giants dugout and settled in a camera well. Two sections of fans were evacuated as bees approached the dugout. The honeybees were lured away from the crowd with a mixture of lemonade and cotton candy from the concession stands placed on two utility carts.
Earlier in the year, thousands of bees invaded the Lake Elsinore Naval and Military Academy. A reported 7,000 to 10,000 honeybees were removed from the building to provide safety for volunteers participating in a trash clean up in the area.
The reports of bees in the news are only a fraction of the hives that are being removed from properties daily. But what is causing the increase in bee activity?
Typically mid-March to late June is considered bee season. During bee season a queen bee will begin to lay eggs to create a larger workforce to collect pollen for the colony. When the population of the colony becomes overcrowded, the hive will split into two. One colony staying with the existing honeycomb and the other colony will search for a new nesting location. The swarms you see at the baseball fields, public buildings, and residential households are the latter – bees that have split from an existing hive in search for a new home.
However, the early warm temperatures this year has started bee season sooner than expected. Bees may have a longer season with weather conditions permitting. It is predicted that activity will increase this year. If your home has never had a problem with bee infestations, chances are much higher this year than with previous seasons.