KNOXVILLE, Tennessee — Warmer weather means more bees are swarming. Every spring, what looks like "clouds" of bees stick to trees and sides of houses.
Beekeepers are urging people to call the professionals to remove those swarms safely.
Knoxville Beekeeper Rick Cheverton runs The Cliffs of Honey Bee Farms described swarms of bees come in a variety of settings and sizes.
"It's going to be essentially a ball of bees," Cheverton said. "Maybe a basketball size, it may be football size, you know or it can be slightly larger than that."
Cheverton has already gotten a few calls this season to take care of the bee swarms.
"They can lay in most anywhere; in fact, I had a lady call me last year and they had swarmed into her mailbox," Cheverton said. "They're kind of looking for a place to where they can live and it's very temporary. They're just there temporarily until they can find a better home."
But swarms aren't always attached to something. you could also see a sort of "cloud" of them in the air. The important thing to remember is they're not swarming because they're mad or want to sting you. It's how they grow and spread.
"The reason they swarm is because they have outgrown wherever it is that they're living," Cheverton explained.
When the bees wake up from hibernating in the winter, queens start laying thousands of eggs. A lot of times, those colonies need more space in their hives, so they leave and start scouting for new places.
Cheverton said it's important to leave the removal of the swarm up to professionals because honeybees play a large role not only in pollination but in the economy too.
"What you don't want to do is call someone to destroy the bees," Cheverton urged. "That would be the worst thing that can happen because bees are very docile for the most part when they're swarming."
Don't throw rocks or spray them with water or pesticides. Call county extension agents or area beekeepers. They know the correct methods to protect the bees.
"It's a multi-billion dollar impact on our economy every year," Cheverton explained of honeybees. "That is something that we need very much we need to protect very much."
Most communities have beekeeping associations you can contact on Facebook. In Knoxville, you can visit the Knox Co TN Facebook page or call Jason Beil at 865-307-1792 to report a swarm.