Monday, May 16th, 7pm
Guest Speaker: Peter Helfrich
Topic: Bee-yond Honey Bees: Meet Your Native Bees
Most people -- even beekeepers! -- are surprised to learn that Georgia is home to some 500 different species of native bees. While they may not be as well known as their honey bee brethren, these wild bees are essential to a healthy ecosystem. This fully illustrated talk will introduce some of the most common native bees found locally, touching on the eco-system services they provide, basic identification, and why beekeepers should make an effort to get to know these many other species of beneficial pollinators
Peter Helfrich is a backyard beekeeper and native bee enthusiast who lives in Decatur, GA. He is vice president of the Metro Atlanta Beekeepers Association, serves as a newsletter editor for the Georgia Beekeepers Association, and holds Certified and Journeyman level certifications through UGA’s Master Beekeeper program. He currently chairs Decatur’s Bee City USA® committee, helping to ensure Decatur meets numerous criteria related to pollinator conservation, habitat creation and public education on the topics of bees, native pollinators, and native plants. He frequently speaks about bees in city schools and public events, and helps to organize Decatur’s annual National Pollinator Week observance, as well as numerous other bee-related activities throughout the year.
NEW MEETING LOCATION! Our May meeting will be held in person at the Reynolds Nature Preserve,
Have you seen a swarm?
Swarms are a natural and common occurrence. While you should always respect wild creatures by keeping your distance and remaining calm, you are typically not in danger as long as you do not disturb or harass them. Honey bees are our friends; they are our partners in agriculture and the environment.
When bees are in swarm mode, they have one goal...find a home. They are not interested in stinging anyone.
There is no need to panic. If left alone, they will find a home and move on. This can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days.
If you see a swarm of honey bees and would like them removed, please text or call us at 404-369-3809 and we will send one of our club members to retrieve it.
If the swarm is in a building, we recommend that you use a licensed bee removal specialist such as Georgia Bee Removal, 706-540-4166.
A few things to consider in advance:
1. Identify whether the bees are honey bees. For reference of honey bees versus other bees, wasps and hornets, visit here to find out.
2. Please give us 10 -15 minutes to respond before calling someone else. This is a second job for most of us. If the bees move on, it means they've found a home.
3. We will undoubtedly have questions for you regarding the swarm. To the best of your knowledge, try to describe:
The approximate size of the swarm (using familiar terms such as softball, volleyball, basketball).
How long has the swarm been at the location.
How high off the ground is the swarm.
The exact address of the property where the swarm is located.
Is this public or private property? If private, please give the contact information of the owner, if possible.
Have the bees been disturbed (sprayed with anything, or otherwise harassed) by anyone.
Our club members rescue swarms throughout Metro Atlanta and surrounding regions, including Fulton, Dekalb, Clayton, Fayette, Henry, Spalding, Butts, Cobb, Douglas, and Paulding Counties