How To Get Rid Of Bees In A Wall Cavity – Reclaiming Walls From Unwelcome Bees

Affiliate Disclaimer - As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
It supports the website. So, Thank you

Bees nest in all sorts of places but some species like to locate cavities and set up home there. While this is fine in nature, it’s not such a welcome idea when the bees make their home within the walls of your home. This leads many people to wonder how to get rid of bees in a wall cavity.

What Type Of Bees Nest In Cavities?

The most common type of bee that you’ll find nesting in a wall cavity is the mason bee, sometimes called a mortar bee. They take their name from the fact that they make their homes in masonry structures.

However, there are some other species of bees that you may find lurking in your walls including honey bees and bumblebees.

Are They Dangerous?

Pretty much every bee species on the planet is non-aggressive. These insects have something of a bad reputation purely because they have a stinger.

Yes, they can sting but they’re usually reluctant to and will only attack when they feel threatened. Moreover, there are many species of stingless bee including the male masonry bee so they pose no threat at all.

The real problem comes in terms of structural damage but again, this isn’t always the case. You have to remember that bee nests are typically temporary and, once the bees have completed their breeding cycle, they’ll leave.

As long as the wall is in good shape, structural damage shouldn’t be an issue. It only really becomes a problem when the wall is already structurally weak. Consistent exposure to anything that could further destroy it, such as nesting bees, may cause the wall to begin crumbling.

Best Ways To Get Rid Of Bees In A Wall Cavity

If you’ve discovered a colony of bees nesting in your walls then I’d imagine you’ll want to get rid of it. Again, I should remind you that the nest will only be temporary so, if you can put up with it then it’s a good idea to leave it alone.

However, if you really do need to remove the bees then the following methods are the most effective and reliable.

Smoke The Bees Out

You’ve probably seen beekeepers using a bee smoker and they do this because it changes the behavior of bees. For starters, the bees become more placid when exposed to smoke because the smoke interferes with their ability to sense and communicate with one another. It doesn’t do them any harm and quickly wears off once the smoke is gone but it does improve your safety as they’ll be less likely to sting.

What’s more, when exposed to smoke, bees see it as a threat and will make it a priority to leave the area. Once they’ve gone, you can fill in the hole and have your home back to yourself.

You don’t even need to use a proper bee smoker; simply lighting a fire that creates a lot of smoke close to the entrance of the nest will be sufficient.

Of course, when using fire, it is vital to ensure proper safety precautions are taken and to have a fire extinguisher close to hand.

Lure The Bees Out With Unattractive Scents

There are some smells that bees just cannot be around. I’ve written guides in the past talking about plants that bees don’t like and these are ideal to place around your garden to prevent them from visiting.

However, if there is already an established nest in place, a few strategically placed plants might not be enough to encourage them to move on.

It’s best to apply any scents directly (or as close as possible) to the nest entrance. Things like peppermint, thyme, eucalyptus, garlic, and cinnamon all work wonders and most of us already have these things in our kitchens.

You can use an essential oil in one of the above scents or take the raw plant leaves and bulbs and boil them in water. Allow the mixture to cool and use a spray bottle to apply the solution to the entrance of the nest.

Another great tip is to place cut slices of cucumber on some aluminum foil and place this close to the nest. The cucumber creates a chemical reaction with the foil which results in a smell that bees detest.

Chemical Treatments

I’m always keen to remove bees in the most humane way possible. They are important to the ecosystem and act as pollinators. In short, we would be lost without them. Where possible, using natural methods is the best option.

But I’m not naive enough to think that there will be times when something a little more drastic is required and that’s where chemical treatments come in.

There are many different types of bee killing products including sprays, foams, and dusts. They contain ingredients that are toxic to bees and, upon application, will eradicate the nest entirely.

It’s vital that you use the product according to the manufacturer’s instructions, not only for the most effective treatment but also for your safety.

Furthermore, it’s usually best to apply the treatment to the nest when most of the bees are inside as this will ensure that as many are killed as possible. Typically, this will be just before dawn or at dusk.

In some cases, you may need to make more than one application to fully eradicate the problem. Once you’re confident that all of the bees are dead, it’s then vital that you seal the hole and check your home for other cavities that may become a potential nest site in the future.

Calling A Professional Bee Remover

Some people don’t want to take on the responsibility of removing the bees themselves. This could be because they’re allergic to or frightened of bees or maybe they simply don’t have the time. What’s more, you may have tried DIY methods that have not been successful but there are plenty of bee removal specialists that can help you out.

You could check my list of North American Beekeeping Associations as they may be able to provide assistance.

There are also many pest removal companies all over the country that are more than willing to take on this kind of work.

Usually, a professional will use the cut out method where they physically remove the nest from the wall. But don’t worry, this doesn’t mean cutting a chunk out of the wall; many companies use modern techniques that involve ‘keyhole surgery’ to get rid of the nest.

Of course, it is worth keeping in mind that this is usually the most costly method but it’s also incredibly reliable and gives you the peace of mind that the nest will be gone for good.

Final Thoughts

Having bees living in your walls is never fun. Some people simply don’t like their presence while others may be worried about the structure of the wall being damaged. In any case, this will lead you to look for ideas on how to get rid of bees in a wall cavity. Don’t worry! There are lots of ways you can encourage the bees to find a new home and many of them are totally harmless to our winged friends.