This is not a sponsored post. We paid for all of these bees + the drama that unfolded.
For the love of honey.
When we purchased this house, we jumped head first into demo. Within the first week of being in and out – our neighbor popped over to introduce herself. She kindly told us about the swarm of bees that come to the outside of our chimney each year, and how she told the previous owner time and time again to take care of them. At this point, there was still snow on and off the ground so the bees were nowhere to be seen, there fore out of sight, out of mind.
As the weather grew warmer and we had our first cookout here we quickly realized that the bees were growing in population day by day. It was hard to have the kids outside, on the deck, or even on the driveway. We were constantly swatting, squealing and screaming trying to get away from their stingers.
“BEES ARE HERE!” – obviously said in the Jersery Shore voice.
It was time to track these bee-tchs down.
It was actually quite intriguing turning the bend around our house and really taking a look at our chimney. An area that is packed with overgrown weeds and plants – we obviously just steered clear. It is actually super attractive, in fantastic shape, and we soon came to find, covered in bees.
I know, I know, it doesn’t look like THAT big of an issue. So we were happy. Thought this bee-issue was a bit exaggerated and a few sprays and we wouldn’t bee-thinking twice about it again. ( ha. love this.)
After Dan’s Dad John (the know it all of everything, literally – thank god for his brains) came out, he discovered that they were in fact honey bees. Which made this “getting rid of the bees” situation a bit more sticky. (haha. sticky, honey … I’m on a roll)
We called multiple bee-removal companies/independent people to see how they would go about the removal. Seeing as honey bees are on the fast decline, we wanted them to live and just find another happy home. Some quotes consisted of trapping and taking them away, some killing, some were bee keepers that would use them at their house. Of course, we chose the last one. We assumed after chatting a bit, that the bees may be under the siding so removing a bit of the aluminum siding would be needed in efforts to remove them all. That’s fine, not a problem!
Once our bee guy – Rick (he gave me permission to name drop) came to our house to take a peek, he immediately knew that the situation we had on our hands was not was we had anticipated.
Knock three times on the ceiling if you want bees … OoOo twice on the pipe (tap tap) if you want to go brOoOoke!
Nice remix right? Oh, I loved that song as a kid, thank a lot to “Now and Then” a must watch by the way. Rick came into our home took a look at the inside of our structure. Bee 101, we learned that they will only build hives in hollow areas. And if they have been here for years, they must be in a larger area, much larger than what a slimmer of siding had to offer. He tapped away at the walls, surrounding our fireplace + mantel. Looking in and out of our side window trying to figure out where the back of the chimney + fireplace lines up directly. He then drilled one hole in the wall, stuck his camera through to see what he could find. Notta.
Next hole over (just a few inches) and BAM. The “get back in there girls” qoute I mentioned in an earlier post came out and our stomachs sank. He quickly, with the help of Dan, taped the hole over and later explained he hit the mother load. He was to come back in a few days, set up camp and take care of the problem. They definitely built their hive in our wall. And on top of that, we were not sure as to how much was hiding behind our mantel. EEK.
He had the area all blocked off and ready to go. The boys were terrified, who likes bees? Brody has an awful reaction from bees so we knew the kids would have to steer clear of the room no matter how much he blocked it off. He knocked even more on the walls, further explaining that what sounded like studs behind the drywall was more than likely honeycomb, seeing as it gives off a concrete sound. Fantastic … that’s all I kept thinking the entire time.
They smoked out the bees from the side of the house, it is not harmful, just makes them act as if they’ve had 100 tiny bee cocktails. Makes the entire process much safer for everyone.
After the smoke set in, the guys starting cutting away at the dry wall. Obviously they had to be very precise and cautious all at the same time. When we heard a loud “Oh. My. God.” come out of Ricks mouth we shook our pants for spare change and wet them at the same time.
After they (safely) vacuumed out most of the bees, they said we could come and take a look. We quickly grabbed our camera to see what those little stingers have done.
Ahh!! Seriously. This is our life. We pulled back that curtain and jaws hit the hard wood floors. We have never seen anything like this before. It was the most aggravating and most beautiful thing I have ever seen. What bees can do, and where they can do it just blew my top off – (don’t get excited boys, there’s nothing to see). And the fact that the previous owner did not disclose this to us left us feeling jipped and furious.
Over 5 ft of honeycomb, nearly 20,000 bees swarming behind an inch and a half of drywall. Lord help us if we ever decided to hang a picture this is what we would have drilled directly into.
Rick said this is the low-key season of the honey bee … if we had waited a few more months the colony would have been at 60,000+
I know. Unbeelievable.
Isn’t it somewhat beautiful to look at? I am SO glad we went with Rick. Knowing he will take the bees home and give them a happy home. He cleaned the entire cavity out – honeycomb and all – and patched the inside and outside of our home.
We have a giant spackled wall above our mantel now. The buzzing bees are no longer wizzing by our heads while we hang out outside. We are relieved. I really wish the owner would have said SOMETHING. Rick said even a pest inspection would not have shown this because they are dormant in the wintertime. Either way we would have been out of luck. There is no way this JUST became an issue. It cost us $700 to clear this mess up. Which of course is just another dip into our decor budget. So thankful it’s all over it … every time I look at these pictures I get goosebumps.
Goodbye honey bees … please don’t come back. Really, like ever.