LCBA's "Bee Team" volunteers remove colonies from structures and swarms from property in Lewis County, Washington.
Not in Lewis, Thurston, or Cowlitz County? Click here to visit Beesource.com's nationwide bee swarm & colony removal list.
LCBA Bee Team members remove bees free of charge, but gladly accept donations to support our educational programs. We will hive bees for homeowners who are members of LCBA; otherwise, our volunteers take the bees.
The Bee Team will ask before tearing down siding, etc., but putting structures back together is up to the homeowner.
Before contacting our Bee Team, please have the following information ready:
(1) Your physical address & telephone #
(2) Where are the bees? Please give us details:
* How high off the ground are they?
* If they are in a structure, what kind of structure, & where in the structure?
* If you can take a digital photo showing placement of your swarm or colony and email it to us, that helps!
(3) Are you sure these are bees and not wasps or yellow jackets? LCBA does NOT remove wasps, yellow jackets, or hornets: doing so would take business away from exterminators. For contacts who remove these insects, scroll down below the photos.
Here is what a yellow jacket nest looks like (photo from KnockoutPestControl.com):
Below, here's what a wasp nest looks like:
Below, what a wild honey bee nest looks like:
What honey bee comb in a wall looks like:
Helpful websites for telling whether you have honey bees, yellow jackets, wasps, or something else: click here for the University of California-Riverside's page, or visit Washington State Beekeepers' Association bee/wasp identification page. Another helpful source is New York's KnockoutPests.com
Want to Get Rid of Yellow Jackets, Wasps, or Hornets?
Between Longview & Centralia, WA:
Carl Roush, 360 578 2018 (May through September). Retired Lower Columbia College Biology Instructor Carl Roush seeks yellow jackets, wasps, & hornets - he works with a laboratory to process their venom to help those with allergies. Click here for his card.
Between Centralia & Olympia, WA:
To contact Mike Juhl, Olympia's "Bee Man," click here.
Honey Bee Swarms:
Call Right Away!
When you see a swarm, it won't likely be there much longer than a couple of hours: scout bees will be seeking a permanent home for the colony. Since many members of our Bee Team have full time jobs, they may not be able to reach your swarm in time to capture it, so call as soon as you can!
LCBA's Bee Team:
An additional resource:
Below, Onalaska bees recoup honey from comb extracted from the crawl space in which they'd taken up residence:
Above, LCBA President Norm Switzler and member Rob Jenkins removing comb from a large colony under the eaves of a residence. Below, Norm holds up a chunk of comb with capped brood & queen cells - the peanut-shaped projections on the left by his fingers - from a colony removal in Ethel, June 1 2013.
To see a YouTube video by the Centralia Chronicle featuring Norm and other Bee Team members removing a colony from the historic Salzer Valley Schoolhouse in Centralia, WA on July 19, 2009, click here.
Above, President Norm & new friends, Onalaska, July 2012; below, fitting extracted comb into frames. It's important to preserve the original comb orientation so that larvae don't fall from brood cells, among other reasons. To view a slideshow of different types of colony removals, click here; to learn more, see our April 2013 newsletter.
Below, Michaela and Terrie display comb with brood cut out from wall of the Veterans of Foreign War hall in Winlock, May 11 2013; Rob Jenkins, team leader for this removal, looks on:
Below, Matt Taylor (on roof) and Norm Switzler engaged in extreme removal sports - Onalaska, April 28 2013:
Got Swarms? Bee Prepared!
VP Dave Gaston keeps a baited swarm box on hand to atract swarms (see details in our April newsletter. Below, bees enter Dave's swarm box:
Photos above & below by Kaye Gaston, who reports that it "was beautiful watching them moving in a clockwise pattern as they entered the box."
Above, comb extracted from a barn wall near Winlock, WA.