What You Need To Know About Bee Swarm
When encountering a bee swarm, most peoples’ instinct is to scream and run. With the exception of hornets and some wasps, who tend to gang up and pelt their victims as a destructive unit, most species of bee swarm in search of new housing territories and to communicate with one another. There is danger in this, however, especially for those with known allergic reactions to the chemicals found in the stingers of all hymenopteran organisms.
Bees such as the orchard mason will swarm when looking for new breeding and housing areas, as mentioned. They scout out on their own and meet back in a predetermined place, such as a tree trunk or a shaded rock. The communication dance that they do is astounding to watch, if one is given the chance from a distance. All bees have a pheromone alarm system, which is given off by one or more of the colony when they feel threatened for any reason. Even the bee species with the mildest manners can turn into a whirling furry of anger when this pheromone is released while they are in a huddle.
A much more developed sense of this pheromone alarm system is present in both the wasp and hornet species. The variety that many refer to as the bald-faced hornet is not actually a hornet, but a wasp, who builds his hive in aerial spaces as hornets do. He is also considered to be one the most fearsome species, with a reputation for chasing down irritators and attacking with malice.
There is a seemingly invisible threshold surrounding the dens of hornets, and the slightest question of either danger or territory infringement can trigger a mass of angry, merciless troops. This defense instinct is ultimately effective in fending off any adversaries or would-be nest stealers, but it spells an outright health hazard to innocent passersby.
It is recommended that one never takes a swat or screams and runs when faced with one or two wasps or hornets. Killing a colony member within less than 10 meters of the nesting site will call out the guards, as the pheromone releases under stress and after death. Should you panic and become aggressive, it is best to quietly remove yourself from the vicinity as quickly as possible. The bee swarm mechanism is a strong and powerful one, and they will seek the sources of the pheromone, both on the distressed member and on the culprit.
Hornets are the largest of the wasp species, and the African varieties can reach 1.8 inches in length. There is a sunny side to their existence, however, as these insects are responsible for foraging on many pests and parasites. They are also unlikely to build their homes in noisy or busy areas, and tend to be very private, solitary insects. Your chances of crossing a hornet in your own back yard are lessened by this fact.