It’s nice to have pollinated flowers and honey, but we could do with out the sting. Thankfully, there are ways to lessen your chances of being barbed.
Step 1: Know your bees. Nonsocial bees include carpenter bees, which are large, have a black abdomen, and nest in wood, and digger bees, which are large and nest in the ground. Nonsocial bees don't live in colonies and won't sting unless extremely provoked.
Step 2: Know your social bee. Honeybees are social bees, which means they live in colonies and aggressively defend the nest as a group, so you're more apt to get stung.
: Some bees in the southwestern U.S. or Florida, know that are Africanized – also known as "killer bees." Though they're smaller than regular honeybees, they're more easily provoked and sting in greater numbers.
Step 3: Consult an expert. In general, the safest and easiest way to get rid of a hive or nest is to call a beekeeper or pest control expert. But remember, bees are useful in a garden, so don't exterminate unless you have to.
Step 4: Pick your battles. Even if you're dealing with social bees, you don't really need to do anything unless there's a hive close to your home. Otherwise, leave them alone and they won't bug you.
Step 5: Pick your flowers. To prevent bees from buzzing near your house, reduce the amount of flowering plants you keep on your porch or in other areas of your yard that are near doors and windows.
TIP: Some people say that hanging mothballs in pantyhose in your yard will repel bees.
Step 6: Put out traps. Put bee traps in trees or on the ground. To make one, take a two-liter plastic soda bottle, and cut off the mouthpiece of the bottle. Pour in a few inches of juice or soda. Then, place the mouthpiece upside down in the bottle, stapling it in place. Bees fly in and are trapped.
TIP: You can also buy bee traps at a hardware store.
Step 7: Avoid swarms. If you see a large group of bees moving together or resting somewhere, steer clear of them and either call a pest control expert or wait to see if they move on. They are "swarming," or looking to set up a new hive.
FACT: Did you know? Honeybees communicate about the location and quality of food sources by dancing.