Relocation and destruction


Beekeepers and companies may remove unwanted honey bee nests from structures to relocate them into an artificial hive. This process is called a “cut out”.

Bee removal

Bee removal is the process of removing bees from a location. Professional services exist for this purpose.
Since the honey bee is considered to be the most beneficial of all insect species, and bee colonies have potential economic value, professional bee removal often involves transferring them to a new location where they can be cared for and used for crop pollination and for production of honey and beeswax.
As such, bee removal has characteristics both of pest control and of beekeeping. Live bee removal or saving the bees can be accomplished by a local beekeeper who will then either keep the bees, sell them, or simply help whoever is requesting the bee removal to keep them in a hive box. However, not all beekeepers provide removal services.


Animal destruction

Black bears destroy hives in their quest for honey and protein rich larvae.Grizzly bears will also eat beehives and are harder to dissuade from taking several beehives.

Hives erected by humans as a defense for their crops against elephants are sometimes destroyed by elephants. These hives are hung on a single metal wire that encircles the crop field of some farms in African elephant territory. The installation is called a BeeHive Fence and was conceived by Lucy King.

Human destruction

Humans have historically destroyed nests and hives of honey-producing bee species in order to obtain honey and beeswax and other bee products.

Humans may also determine that a beehive must be destroyed in the interest of public safety or in the interest of preventing the spread of bee diseases.

The U.S. state of Florida destroyed the hives of Africanized honey bees, in 1999.

The state of Alaska has issued regulations governing the treatment of diseased beehives via burning followed by burial, fumigation using ethylene oxide or other approved gases, sterilization by treatment with lye, or by scorching.

In New Zealand and the United Kingdom, the treatment of hives infected with the disease American foulbrood with antibiotics is prohibited, and beekeepers are required by law to destroy such colonies and hives with fire.

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