Honey bee hive removal from wall in Guilderland NY

Instead of a BBQ this Memorial Day, I remove a hive which had moved into a wall in Guilderland, NY with Anne F. Several weeks ago, the homeowner had attempted to spray the hive with pesticide and expanding foam to block the entrance. This forced 1000’s of bees to crawl along the wall and out into a bedroom, making a huge mess. Luckily the homeowner was not in the bedroom at the time. Once the bees moved the expanding foam normal hive activity resumed .

The bees were able to access a uninsulated cavity in the wall. The first floor mortar and bricks had worn away where the vinyl siding started.  Due to a gap between the wood joists and brick the bees were able to expand into 4 bays.

Below is a look at the first two bays. The yellow and white on the brick is expanding foam and caulking.

Honey bee hive in wall above bricks


The hive entrance before the removal stated. The entrance was busy suggesting a large hive inside. The various attempts at sealing up the hive can be seen.

Dead bees were found behind the vinyl siding. There was a “dead nest smell” as the siding was removed.  There was propolis running along the wooden board.

siding removed showing hive entrance

After removing the 2 by 8 the first two sections of the hive were exposed. Below is a piece of comb waiting to be lowered to the ground.

Removing comb

Here pieces of comb are being rubber banded into the frame, so they can be placed into their new hive.

Comb in frame

The queen was found after the last piece of comb was removed. She was marked with a 3 dot pattern.

Queen Found

The hive had expanded into 4 bays. No amount of spraying pesticides in the entrance was going to be able to kill 100% of this hive.

4 cavities exposed

Anne finishes stuffing insulation into the last cavity.

Filled with insulation

The hive was filled with insulation, the entrance gaps were filled with steel wool, and then caulked over.  The last piece of siding is about to go back on.

Sealed back up