Are they honey bees or...?

 

Before you call Swarmhunter, try to identify the insects. Are they honey bees? Or are they yellow jackets? Or another type of bee or wasp? Swarmhunter only removes and relocates honey bees. 

Honey bee

Honey bee

Honey bees live communally, as a colony. They are visibly furry and about 3/4 inch in length.

Yellow jacket

Yellow jacket

Commonly mistaken for honey bees, this type of wasp is about a half inch in length. They nest in large colonies, usually in the ground but sometimes in houses.

Miner bee

Miner bee

A fan of your azaleas, these bees emerge in spring for only a few weeks of activity. They nest in bare soil, often in landscaping on the perimeter of a house or under a porch.

European hornet

European hornet

European hornets make intricate paper communal nests out of plant material and other fibers. They are longer than honeybees at 2-3 inches.

Bumble bee

Bumble bee

Bumble bees nest in small colonies. They are round and covered in soft fuzz. There are many species of bumblebees, some native to NC.

Mason or orchard bee

Mason or orchard bee

These are solitary bees native to the U.S. They have green or blue coloring and are sometimes raised to pollinate orchards. Click on the photo to learn how to establish a mason bee nest in your yard.

Carpenter bee

Carpenter bee

Large shiny, sturdy bees that are mostly black, with a furry yellow thorax. They nest solitary, burrowing into wood.

More information on identifying bees can be found in 

The Bees of North Carolina: An Identification Guide

Our resource page, The Bee Yard, has links to more information about pollinators. 

 

 

 

Photo credits:

  • Yellow jacket: Beatriz Moisset - Own work. Licensed under GFDL via Wikimedia Commons 

  • Honey bee and European hornet: Pixabay.com

  • Bumble bee: llorban - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

  • Carpenter bee:  ysmad.com - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

  • Mason bee: Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Common