How to Smoke Out a Bees Nest

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Smoke bees out rather than using harsh chemical sprays if possible.
Smoke bees out rather than using harsh chemical sprays if possible. (Image: Jupiterimages/BananaStock/Getty Images)

Bees create nests on tree limbs, in bushes and sometimes on the side of a house. If you want to use a natural method to rid your property of the hive, smoking the nest out can be effective. It requires safety precautions to ensure a fire is not ignited. Also, if the nest is attached to your house, consider purchasing a bee spray or calling an exterminator.

Things You'll Need

  • Fire
  • Long stick or rake

Start a small fire directly under the bee's nest. Use dried pine needles, newspaper or twigs to get the fire going and put small sticks on it to keep it going. Place clumps of green grass on it to generate more smoke, always being mindful of the bees. If they begin attacking you, run for shelter in your home.

Watch the fire closely, taking care not to let it become too large to control. Allow the smoke to rise to the bee's nest for about 20 minutes before attempting to remove it.

Approach the bee's nest with the long stick or rake. Hit it at the section where it attaches to the limb and let it fall to the ground. Immediately push it into the fire with your tools.

Allow the nest to burn fully. The next day, examine the area to ensure the nest and bee population are fully removed.

Tips & Warnings

  • Smoke out a bee hive in the early morning or early evening because bees are at their most docile at those time. (See Reference 1).
  • Wear thick clothing that covers most exposed skin to avoid bee stings.
  • Remain close to shelter and close your doors and windows, leaving a safe escape from the bees.
  • Position several compound buckets of water near the fire source in case it become too large to manage.
  • Never grab the nest with your bare hands.

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