Honeybees are definitely independent. They can fly for miles for food, they can defend themselves against attack, and they can even survive the harshest winters, despite being very vulnerable to cold. But despite being so tough, there are some basic things bees need to survive, and plenty of problems that can befall them. Let’s briefly go over what bees need and don’t need.

Honey Bee Pests and Diseases

While varroa mite is the leading biosecurity threat, honey bees may be affected by a range of pests and diseases including:

  • Tropilaelaps mite (Tropilaelaps clareae)
  • Tracheal mite (Acarapis woodi)
  • Braula fly (Braula caeca)
  • American foulbrood (Bacillus larvae)
  • European foulbrood (Melissococus pluton)
  • Leafcutter bee chalkbrood (Ascosphaera aggregata)
  • Small hive beetle (Aethina tumida)



Honey Bee Life Cycle

The life cycle of a honey bee is perennial. Each colony contains three adult castes: egg-laying queens, sperm-producing male drones and nonreproductive female workers. The only job of the drone is to mate with the queen during seasonal mating flights, and soon after discharging their sperm, drones die. Worker honey bees are able to live for six weeks, while queens can survive up to five years.

The life cycle of honey bees begins when an egg hatches. During the first stage of its development, the offspring form a digestive system, nervous system and outer covering. Each member of a colony develops as an adult over varying durations. Queens become full-grown adults within 16 days; drones develop in under 24 days and female workers require 21 days during larval and pupal development.

Within each colony, a single queen rules her workers and drones. Future queens develop inside larger cells by constant consumption of royal jelly, while workers and drones are fed only royal jelly during the first few days of their lives.


While bees can benefit the environment in many ways, it is inconvenient and possibly dangerous to let a bee hive thrive near your home.

It is important to properly identify the particular species living near your home, as bees are often mistaken for wasps due to their similar physical characteristics. There are different elimination processes for wasps and bees, so effective treatment relies upon proper identification. When using any method of bee control, it is also necessary to know effective application strategies, as well as the limitations and dangers associated with each method. In many regions, special licenses are required to treat infestations.

The only way to rid your home of bees is to remove the hive entirely. This precarious task requires the correct tools and strategy. For safety and efficiency purposes, a pest control expert should be consulted before any bee control technique is attempted.