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The honey bee, an insect poorly protected by law !

Who is the honeybee ?

l'abeille, Apis mellificaLatin name : apis mellifica
Order : hymenoptera
Family : Apidae
Size : 1 to 2 cm
Location : any habitat
Period : all year round

What you need to know about bees

Bees rarely settle in houses that are regularly inhabited, but in second homes they may settle in a chimney or wall cavity. If the nest is accessible, before considering destroying it, try to contact a beekeeper who will be delighted to collect them.

It's important to protect bees

l'abeille - vue de dessus Bees are protected by the laws of 25 February 1975 and 5 July 1985, but these decrees concern the use of plant protection products on pollinators in general and do not take sufficient account of the protection of bees themselves. Unfortunately, the bee is not protected by law, yet it is an essential element in the pollination of plants !

Letter from a beekeeper :

"If beekeepers don't always intervene, it's often because they can't, as they don't always have their roofer's diploma, nor their climbing diploma, and even less their tightrope walker's diploma.

In fact, many bee colonies are inaccessible (chimney flues, under-roofs, etc.). Only very exceptionally (1/100) do they represent a danger to the occupants of a house.

People no longer know how to deal with nature, which has become alien to them, and don't understand when it comes to them (even if it's the bee, the exceptional pollinator that enables humans to feed themselves in the best possible conditions).

As I often say to people I talk to, "remove the fear factor and the problem is solved".

But soon, the problem will no longer be a problem, because all the 'wild' colonies, whether isolated or unprotected against the Asian hornet, will disappear naturally.

Frequently asked questions about bees, carpenter bees and bumblebees

Subject : Bees
Q: How can I protect my holiday home from swarms of bees? Twice now they've taken up residence behind a shutter, and naturally they damage the wood with their honey, which is dangerous for us.
A: I understand, and unfortunately this is very common on second homes. Bees, wasps, hornets - and we can't offer you any solutions to prevent them from taking up residence when you're away !

Subject : Bees
Q:  I live in the middle of the countryside and have lovely neighbours with 32 beehives overlooking our pleasant garden. Unfortunately, the bees don't like this approach and our happy place has turned into a real nightmare. They're aggressive and we can't enjoy our garden any more, even without a swimming pool !
A: Bees are protected insects and they look for water to drink. We can't offer you any solutions !

Subject : Bees
Q: I've got a swarm of bees in my fireplace between the brick and the chimney. How can I get rid of them without letting them into the house? I've had a few get into my basement because my fireplace is downstairs. Is it dangerous to heat the fireplace or could that make them leave? Would it be better to wait until winter ?
A: I'm going to have a hard time answering your question, as it's difficult to locate the swarm in your flue ! One thing's for sure: when winter arrives, they'll move into their winter quarters and sleep there for several months, and if you intervene, they'll all die. To make them leave, close your flue with a mosquito net and burn some chimney sweeping compound, which gives off a thick smoke. Those that don't leave will probably die.

Subject : Carpenter bees
Q: What product should I use to get rid of the carpenter bees that have taken up residence in the wooden beam of our terrace, and which we find full of sawdust on the tiles in the morning? I should point out that in 1999 we called in a company specialising in treating carpentry with an injection of this product: XYLOPHENE SOP 2000 ESE CERTIFIED CTB P+, but every year in the heat they come back.
A: I'm not sure that our insecticide will solve your problem. Carpenter bees generally only attack wood that is fragile (moisture attack and fungi). You should check with a nail whether your wood is hard or "soft".

Subject Carpenter bees

Q: I'd like to know whether your 4J 10% insecticide is effective against carpenter bees. If I follow your advice, I'll have to change my roof. The problem is that it's very expensive.
A: Carpenter bees are not "dangerous" insects, but it's true that they dig nests in soft or damaged wood, which can be a problem if you have a lot of them! 4J insecticide diluted to 10% kills hornets. So there's no reason why it shouldn't kill this type of insect.

Subject : Bumblebees

Q: Bumblebees have taken up residence behind the plasterboard in my child's bedroom. I've broken part of the wall, but I can only see that they're there without getting to the nest directly. And the roof is too high to block access. Even though it's not dangerous and they're useful, I'd like to get rid of them or prevent them from continuing to develop the nest. What products do you offer to repel or destroy bumblebees ?
A: As a repellent, we don't yet have any products for this type of insect. As an insecticide, a product like Pistal is very effective, but its range is only a few metres.

Subject Bumblebees

Q: We have 1 colony of bumblebees in a corner of the garden (small garden), located between 0 and 1 m from the ground. We discovered this when we wanted to clear the undergrowth. How can we get rid of them because they're preventing us from clearing the undergrowth ?

What are the appropriate products and protective clothing ?

AAs you may know, the bumblebee, like the honeybee, is an essential insect in our ecosystem. It is one of the major pollinators of our environment. This insect is not aggressive. Only the females, feeling attacked, may sting. For this reason, solutions involving the relocation of the nest should be considered wherever possible, rather than outright destruction. All bumblebees born in spring die in autumn. Only the queen hibernates and emerges in the spring. If the bumblebee colony has taken up residence in a corner of the garden and is not disturbing your daily life, I would advise you to leave them alone. Moving a nest is complicated and can be dangerous (risk of stings).

If this bumblebee nest is causing you problems and you need to destroy it, we can recommend our 4J natural insecticide. This insecticide solution should be diluted in a sprayer with 10% water (900ml water + 100ml insecticide concentrate). Apply directly to the nest in question.

Be careful not to take any ill-considered risks. Wear long clothing. Call in a professional if you don't feel up to it.