Backyard bees

Asked July 9, 2020, 1:30 PM EDT

What action should we take to eliminate lots of bees flying in and out of a large backyard bush? Or take no action? Bush is located very close to patio door used frequently.

Clackamas County Oregon

1 Response

Hi, it is necessary to know the identity of the “bee” before deciding what to do about them. Honey bees could feasibly have an open air nest, (though that is unusual). If so, you should be able to see a wax comb structure. The local bee club will most likely have a member willing to come retrieve them. The Portland Urban Beekeepers is probably the closest one to you.

Yellowjacket wasps nest either in wall voids, underground, or in round foot-ball shaped paper nests. They are excellent predators of other insects, caterpillars, and even slug eggs, however, they do become defensive of their nest area as the summer progresses and food becomes scarce. Look at this publication from Portland Park and Recreation and the Xerces Society on “Pocket Guide to Identifying the Bees of Portland”. I think this will help you determine who is living in your bush. If it turns out that it is a yellowjacket nest, you might want to call a professional pest exterminator since it is an area that is frequently used.