Honey bees begin their reproductive cycle during the early spring as temperatures and amount of daylight increases. The insect utilizes a very conspicuous means of producing offspring. After honey bees wear out or outstay a certain environment, the queen in each colony takes leave in search of new, fertile areas to settle. Many of the worker bees in the existing, obsolete colony leave with the queen. The specific process of creating a new colony involves the practice of swarming, which is the term that describes the physical migration of the bees from one area to another. At times, honey bee swarms may contain multiple thousands of flying individuals.
The sights and sounds of honey bee swarms are sometimes awe-inspiring and even a little unnerving. Smaller swarms may only consist of a couple hundred bees, while larger swarms can include tens of thousands. Other animals usually happen upon honey bee swarms by sound alone, as the phenomenon can be heard at great distances given the number of bees migrating. Individuals who come across honey bees swarming may, at first, experience feelings of fear due to the seemingly threatening nature of swarms as they exist. While able to sting, honey bees are not typically aggressive toward other animals while swarming. Bystanders and spectators may safely and successfully navigate around honey bee swarms if done with caution and care. However, if disturbed, the swarm may try to protect the queen, which could result in physical harm.
Honey bee swarms traditionally pose no threat to humans in densely populated areas, as the insect predominantly lives in wooded areas. Homeowners living in more rural areas may encounter swarms but, by using proper precautions and consideration, can usually cohabitate with the flying insects without much incident. If problems arise or honey bees begin nesting in high-traffic areas like parks or on personal property, contact a professional pest control service to avoid unwanted confrontations.