Earth bees: description and how to get rid of, possible harm and danger

Earth bees: description and how to get rid of, possible harm and danger

Along with the usual honey bees, gardeners and gardeners, as well as walkers, can get acquainted with their unusual relatives. These are earthy wild bees that build their dwellings in minks dug in the ground. Like domestic inhabitants, they pollinate plants and collect nectar, and accumulate honey in nests hidden in the ground. There they have whole labyrinths of tunnels and chambers of various sizes.


Earth bees have a characteristic appearance that makes it possible to unequivocally recognize them as relatives of honey bees. They have a black shiny belly with transverse stripes, a dark brown head and wings of a rich purple hue.Externally, males and females do not differ, but males are smaller in size. They are no more than 15 millimeters long, while females reach 19 millimeters.

The finest light hairs are scattered along the abdomen of earthen bees, while the body is abundantly strewn with them. Because of this, insects appear furry. The head of the bees is covered with black hairs.

Environment and habitat features

Earth bees live all over the world, except for South America, Madagascar, Australia and Oceania. They prefer to nest underground, choosing sandy loose soil and areas around fields and forest edges. They settle far from human habitats, therefore they are classified as wild insects. In inhabited areas, the settlements of earth bees can be easily destroyed, so the insects try to choose places away from human habitation.

Unlike honey bees, earth bees do not have such a strict hierarchy.They have a uterus, but the worker bees do not help her in raising offspring, as in a hive. Insects build long underground tunnels ending in oval chambers. Their walls are first fastened with earth chewed with saliva, then lined with a dense layer of wax, which makes them waterproof. In such chambers, honey is stored and larvae are hatched.

What harm do they do?

Earth bees sometimes settle on a site where people are quite rare or do not carry out active agricultural work. They live in small colonies, quite covertly, aided by camouflage coloration. They do not attack people on their own, only if people accidentally disturb the nest or try to destroy it in order to get honey supplies. In such a situation, the bees will attack and can cause serious harm to he alth. Bites are especially dangerous for allergy sufferers, the elderly and young children.

Underground tunnels and chambers can harm green spaces. The roots of plants fall into the cavity, do not receive water and nutrients, dry out, which leads to the death of plantings. This can significantly spoil decorative flower beds, flower beds or lawns. Small shrubs and young, immature trees may also be affected.

Bees can settle near the foundations of buildings or in structures made of loose materials, which can cause damage and destruction. In this case, the insects will have to be driven away by destroying their settlements.

How to get rid of earth bees

If insects cause problems, interfere with normal life on the site, harm green spaces and buildings, they will have to be disposed of.First you need to find a nesting place, which can be in the most unexpected places. You can track the tunnels by the departure of bees. After that, you need to choose the option of destruction, which will be as simple and effective as possible.


If there is one or a couple of settlements of earthen bees on the site, you can use the simplest and most affordable way to deal with them - boiling water. In order to fill the underground passages completely, you will need a lot of water. You can't save money, because even a couple of surviving bees can restore the colony and rebuild the settlement.


The easiest and most affordable way to get bees out of the area is to set traps. They are made from plastic and glass bottles filled with sweet syrup. Insects flock to the sweet aroma and fall into a trap from which they cannot escape. This method can be used where it is impossible to use pesticides, water or other methods of control.


Destruction of underground structures can bring a temporary effect and only if the passages are located close enough to the surface of the earth. It may not be possible to dig deep tunnels by hand, and if the work is left half done, the bees can quickly restore the destroyed structure.

When doing this work, it is imperative to wear a protective suit and mask, because angry insects will certainly protect the home. Also, you must first remove strangers, children and pets from the site, which can also suffer from bites.


It is possible to completely destroy the inhabitants of underground structures with the help of pesticides. Such means as "Dichlorvos" and "Delta Zone" have proven themselves well. Before the start of the operation, smoke is launched into the underground passages to neutralize aggressive insects.

Special services

If it is impossible to cope on your own, or if there are too many bees on the site or they behave aggressively, it is recommended to involve special services. They have the necessary equipment, drugs and experience to carry out such operations.

Danger to humans

Earth bees sting just like their honey relatives. They usually attack if they are disturbed, especially if they try to excavate their dwellings for honey. If insects attack in a swarm, they can cause serious damage, especially if they bite in the face, eyes, lips. Also, bites can be dangerous for children and people with poor he alth, with a tendency to allergic reactions.

Bee venom contains histamine, which, when ingested, can cause a number of negative reactions: swelling, muscle spasms and severe pain.This substance can cause anaphylactic shock. If help is not available or if support is not provided quickly enough, the body may suffer.

To minimize the risks, you need to remove the sting as quickly as possible, especially if there are several of them in the body. The affected area must be treated with a disinfectant and anesthetic, the victim must be given an antihistamine.

If the bitten place is very itchy, you need to apply a compress with sugar or cold to it. If you feel unwell, it is recommended to immediately seek medical help. No lethal cases after stings of earthen bees were registered, however, it is impossible to bring the situation to a dangerous moment.

Minimize risks by the following methods:

  1. Do not plant on loose sandy soils plants with a strong sweet smell that give a lot of nectar and pollen. Such flowers and shrubs attract bees, who collect nectar from them to produce honey.
  2. Also do not grow sunflowers, celery and parsley on the plot. These plants also attract insects with their fragrances, and sunflowers also produce a large amount of pollen.
  3. Blossoming lavender repels earth bees and other flying insects, so it should be grown around arbors, playgrounds and open terraces of cottages and country houses.

Do not forget that earthen bees are pollinators, without which it is impossible to get a lot of vegetables, fruits and berries. So don't destroy them unless absolutely necessary.

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