Help! I have a swarm!

European Honey Bee Swarm; Apis mellifera; Schoolhouse Creek Commom, Berkeley, CA - June 2014

A swarm happens when a colony of bees has outgrown their current hive. A new queen will recruit half the bees in a colony and move out to find a new place.

During swarming, bees are extremely docile, because they aren’t guarding resources or a hive. They are resting until their scouts have found a new home.

However, this can also be scary if they are occupying your home, barn, vehicle, or another space that you’d prefer was bee-free.


  • Contact someone for help (see list below)
  • Observe or take pictures from a safe distance


  • Try to move it or disturb it
  • Call an exterminator
  • Spray water or insecticide on them

Swarm catching or removal is not a service we provide, however, we do have recommendations for who to contact in the case of a swarm settling in your space.

Please use their contact information only for swarm removal:

Dr. Ryan Kuesel:

Dylan Baty: 509-237-3189

Robin Woods: 208-301-1270

Scott Smith: 208-596-1977

Please note: There is no guarantee a swarm can be easily removed. There is also a chance that swarm removal may require structural damage. The WSU Bee program assumes no responsibility for any damage or liability caused by anyone removing a swarm. These folks all live in or near Pullman, and have agreed to share their contact information for swarm removal.