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Vacuuming a swarm


Has anyone had experience vacuuming a swarm?


I’m fairly new to beekeeping but vacuuming a swarm sounds like some sort of torture chamber for the bees?

The traditional methods work so why not just stick to that?


I believe that typically one wouldn’t vacuum a swarm, but possibly vacuum a feral hive for removal from an unwanted place. Swarmed bees have very different objectives (for one they’re not protecting their hive) and can be collected rather easily by shaking the big ball surrounding the queen into some type of receptacle.

When removing (cutting) a feral hive, the intend is to remove all bees, all brood, all comb, and try to collect the queen in the process. Bee vacuums have been designed to make this process as least stressful as possible, and work well in most situations.


Hi IslandLife,
Yes I have watched a few videos on You Tube about vacuuming bees and it doesn’t appear to be harmful to them, having said that those that take the most care use a hose with a smooth internal surface and not the corrugated surface.