Many people are afraid of honey bees; in fact, a mere bee bite can kill people who are allergic to bees.
Although not prevalent, studies show that people’s fear of bees is justified. Bees pose a dangerous threat to individuals with a history of conditions like atherosclerotic heart disease.
While bees play a vital role in the ecosystem by pollinating vegetation and flowers, it’s natural to want to protect yourself from them.
One of the easiest ways to get rid of bees in your yard is by spraying them with a quick-free aerosol, sealing off wall cracks with expanding foam or calling an exterminator.
Although you’re facing the intimidating task of eliminating all honey bees, you can certainly take measures discussed here to minimize their presence in your yard.
Investigate the structural damage to your retaining wall.
I’ve seen several homes that had bees in walls because the original keepers didn’t care for the wall properly.
The bee population in your yard is likely to be small, but it’s important to address the issue immediately before the insects multiply and cause problems.
Check out this blog article for additional information about bee eradication.
Types of bees that build nests in walls
There are many distinct varieties of bees found all over the world.
North America is home to 4000 different kinds of native bees.
So, if the environment is favorable, these stinging insect species will establish a new home in your retaining wall.
Many people assume that all flying insects with stripes and/or yellow and black colors are bees.
Being able to recognize wasps and bees is quite useful if you want to get rid of bees in your walls and avoid being stung.
I’ve been stung by a bee and it’s a terrifying experience.
Larger than honey bees, bumblebees have a rounder fuzzy body and are usually black with yellow stripes.
Generally, they are not hostile but will sting to protect their nests.
2. Honey Bees
Little and thin, honeybees are mostly black and yellow with stripes.
Their nests are perfectly hexagon-shaped.
When honeybees are threatened, they become aggressive.
3. Yellow Jackets
Yellow jackets tend to have a thin waist, less hair on their bodies than bees or wasps and they have bright yellow and black stripes.
They are extremely aggressive and will sting without hesitation.
4. Paper Wasps
Relatively lightly constructed wasps that are primarily brown with a hint of yellow.
Paper wasps build their nests out of chewed wood and saliva to form a paper substance.
If their nest is disrupted, paper wasps will strike aggressively.
How to get rid of bees in retaining wall
It’s not easy to exterminate a bee colony.
Trying to shake them out of the wall if they are well established, may simply make them angry.
Blocking the nest opening may force them to find another place.
As a homeowner, you might see a bee swarm in the early spring and assume that they will leave on their own.
Unfortunately, this is usually not the case.
If you have a bee colony living in your retaining wall, it’s not likely they will decide to move on their own.
Instead, they will most likely set up a new home in a different part of the yard.
In order to get rid of bees in the retaining wall, you will need to do some work.
Bee removal techniques of this type will require more than one attempt.
First, you will have to find out how the bees made it into the wall in the first place.
They may have found a crack and took advantage of the space.
Also, you might find nests in the ground or even inside plants and shrubs.
If the bees are inside a wall, you may need to drill small holes into the cement at night in order to find their entrance while wearing protective clothing.
After you find the entrance, use one or more of the following techniques to get rid of bees in the retaining wall.
- Quick-freeze aerosol product – shoot this foam into the entire crack in the wall until it is completely full
- Expanding foam – while this is just a temporary solution, it will prevent the bees from entering and exiting the crack, killing the ones that are trapped
- Gasoline – only recommended where the wall is far away in the yard, where fire won’t damage anything
- Call an exterminator – this is usually the best option since the exterminator will know how to treat infestations, prevent them in the future and remove bees that are trapped in the wall
Identify bee nests in your wall
Sighting a bee indoors can be particularly frightening if you have an allergy to bee stings.
A common misconception is that all bee’s nests are created underground.
In fact, some species of bees will actually build their nest indoors within the walls and soffits of homes.
In some cases, the bees will have chewed through very small cracks in your exterior wall, making them difficult to spot.
When you see a lot of bees around your home, it might be a sign that there is a bee infestation.
However, there are some things you can look for when you suspect that you have a bee’s nest in your wall.
- Nesting activity – e.g. bees will fly in and out of a small hole or crack
- Shelter spots or entry points- from the outside, inspect your walls for bulges, holes, or cracks
- Dark splotches – dark patches of beeswax from the bee’s secretions
- Beehive smells – bees produce a musky, sweet smell when they are in their honeycomb.
- Bee nesting materials – e.g. bee’s wax, honeycombs, bee carcasses, etc.
- Sounds that indicate a bee’s nest – buzzing, humming, etc.
- Welcoming weather – warm and sunny days can indicate a time for bees to thrive