Not all bees are the same in behavior and nesting habits. While some bees, such as bumblebees, build their nests off the ground, other bees such as wasps, build nests in the ground. And if these nests are near your habitat, they can become a nuisance. While your first instinct is to kill them right away without thinking it through, this can be very dangerous. Bees do not take kindly to threats and will attack if they are threatened. If you are going to attempt to get rid of the ground bees yourself, the following process may serve you well:

1. Wait until dark before doing anything. Since bees are most active during the day, trying any method to kill them will be more safe when they are dormant.

2. Try soaking the ground around their nests with water. Ground bees are not fond of damp areas, and will seek out dry ground. However, this may not work all the time. If it does not, try the next step.

3. Put some powdered insecticide down the opening of the hole. Liquid does not spread as well as powder, making it harder to get inside the entire nest.

4. Should the above step not work, you may want to hire a professional exterminator. They will have professional products that will help to rid your property of ground bees for good. You may also want to consider hiring out if there are numerous ground bee nests on your property, as the professionals may have equipment to deal with all the nests all at once.

Other Ideas

For centuries, people have been getting rid of ground bees on their properties with a variety of methods that have been handed down through the generations. Some of these ideas include:

  • Pour a bucket of turpentine on the nests. Sounds pretty effective, since no living creature can breathe that in and live.
  • Smoke out the bees, and then seal the opening once all the bees are out.
  • Soapy water poured down the opening of the nest may help to drive out the bees. After pouring the water, be sure to move quickly away from the opening, as they will race out to avoid the water. The theory behind this one is that if you continue keeping the ground around the opening wet, the nest will eventually cave in, trapping the queen bee and other bees still inside. Other bees will not return because of the smell.
  • Put mothballs down the opening of the nest. This is repels bees, and they will not stick around very long.
  • Place a large glass bowl over the opening of the nest. While this may not kill the bees right away, it will eventually kill them from lack of food and water. This may be the least dangerous option, as it does not harm the environment with harmful chemicals.

Bottom Line

Killing bees is a dangerous activity if you do not know what you are doing. Protect yourself by following any directions listed on pesticides. Also, if you or any of your family members are allergic to bee stings, by all means, hire an exterminator and stay far away from the nest. Killing ground bees are not worth making you or a loved one sick. You are out to kill bees, not yourself or your family!


University of Minnesota – Wasp & Bee Control

Pest Products – Yellow Jacket Elimination


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