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Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 9,212
We have just taken the hatch off our dalek compost bin because we planned to empty it out today and about half a down rather cross bees with white bottoms have flown out the hatch!
Is there likely to be a nest in there, what kind of bees are they (they're quite dark) and more importantly do they sting (I am allergic to bee stings). What can we do?  Please help.


  • FireFire LondonPosts: 13,893
    Have a cup of tea and some good cake.
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 9,212
    I am thinking more of lunch! Hopefully the bees might have settled down by then. Having looked online, I'm thinking we are going to have to leave it till autumn which is a bit of a bugger as we needed the compost to top up the veg beds before planting. Moreover we have 3 bins right next door to each other so a bit hazardous to empty any of those out as well.
  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 5,532
    were they white tailed bumbles?
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first” 
  • GrannybeeGrannybee Sunny South EnglandPosts: 286
    They sound like white-tailed bumbles. Yes leave them if you can. They do sting but rarely and only when really provoked. You should be ok to use the other bins around  - they are only focused on foraging for food and will probably ignore you.
  • Hi Lizzie,

    you are soooo lucky!! I adore bees and am one of those crazy persons who has bee memorabilia everywhere and plant to entice into my garden!

    i had a bumblebee nest last year in my roof and it was wonderful!! Others may not see it this way!

    they will not hurt you. The queen must have bunkered down into your compost bin for the winter. The warmer weather wakes her and she lets out her pheromones to entice male bees to mate. Bumble bees are usually small colonies... between 10-very maximum 200. Now is the time to make her move if you need to... before her colony gets bigger and settles for summer.

    However, your garden with thrive keeping these bees safe in your compost bin.
    i would make sure the hatch is open now. She may move her colony somewhere else by you doing this or if she’s happy will simply use your bin as her nest for this summer only. 

    If you really cannot tolerate them, then open up all the compost bin and on a wet, colder night she may realise it’s not safe and move. 

    But if you can... please persevere until Autumn where the majority will die and to ensure she moves along... lie your compost bin on its side, empty as much as you can out and she will bunker down somewhere else for this winter. 
    I promise they won’t hurt you. The workers sting only and only if you threaten the young and queen. Then they die if they do sting. 

    I hope this helps. 🥰🥰
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 9,212
    Thanks all, the plan is to wait until it gets dusk then try to slide the hatch back on and  leave that bin alone until the autumn. We might try to empty the bin furthest away, although that's only a foot or so if we think it's safe. I daren't risk getting stung, my reaction is getting worse. I am happy though that the bees are nesting in my garden, I just wish it wasn't in such an inconvenient place! The bins are right next to the path up to the shed as well.
  • B3B3 Posts: 21,401
    We had bumble bees right next to kitchen door. They completely ignored us..
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 9,212
    I wish they would me. I have white hair and insects tend to think I'm a walking white flower.
  • B3B3 Posts: 21,401
    I've got a few more white hairs now.  Just as well they've moved on!
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 9,212
    I started going white in my thirties - a genetic inheritance. I'm used to it now but got the occasional funny look then.
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