We are bee removal & rescue specialists, specializing in safe, organic, pesticide-free bee removals. We are cutting no corners in doing everything properly. We do all that we can to ensure that no bees are harmed in the process of our removals and no chemicals are used. The point of the removal is to take the bees to a new home where they can thrive and be happy. We have arranged a deal with a land owner who is allowing us to keep the feral bees on their property. So, after your bee problem is taken care of at your home or business, the hive or swarm has a brand new home to go to.
I guess you could say we are nature-loving, animal enthusiasts. We don't like the term "granola-hippies" but it may be an easy way to describe us. We're super hard-working folks, and do this for the bees first, for ourselves second. We really do love our work!
We are a wife and husband team, though you will most likely only see the husband (me, Collin) at most removals. Anne works as a dog groomer at two different shops, so she is too busy to come to most removals. She does come out whenever she can get a chance, just for her love of bees!
Collin graduated from Texas State University in 2008 with an English degree, and works on the side as a web developer. Anne has worked with animals for over 15 years, and has less time for bee removals since she works full time as a dog groomer.
My favorite thing about being a bee wrangler is that though it can be very tough work, it is very rewarding. I am doing work for something greater than myself or for commerce. I am saving the lives of a very important animal, and in turn helping humans. Bees are not only awesome creatures, but pollinators of the vegetables we need to survive. The web of life is truly entangled!
When we first started, I searched high and low to find a place to keep bees from removals. Luckily, we found someone not too far from us who wanted someone to bring bees to their land.
It will be many years before Buda Bee Wrangler will be able to afford our own apiary, so in the meantime, Heart of Gold and Buda Bee Wrangler help to support each other. It is a very nice relationship we have. The apiary is simply a beautiful place, with tons of flowers that the bees love.photo credit: Ulrike @ Heart of Gold
A lot of people want to know how we got into this line of work, so I figure I may as well put it all out there.
Collin ended up being mentored by a professional bee removal specialist out of Beaumont, Texas, and spent some time in a sort of apprenticeship. It all started when we had a bee problem of our own.
Our family owned a small shed in the middle of nowhere in Pledger, TX that we rarely checked on, and the neighbor was threatening to sue us if we didn't have the honey bees removed, saying that their child had been stung.
We called all over the place, and couldn't get anyone to help us. I mean, I called everyone--the local ag commission, Parks and Wildlife, TAIS...everyone. One guy flaked on us. One company quoted us a price that was so ridiculous, I had no idea how I could pay that. Another sounded like they were flying by the seat of their pants and had no idea what they were doing. Finally someone knowledgeable and reasonable took the call, and drove out to take care of the bees.
After finishing the job, he told us it would take a couple of weeks for the bees to completely be gone, and I had no problem with that. A few weeks passed, and we got another threatening call from the neighbor of that shed. She again said there were still bees, and if we didn't have them removed, she would sue us.
I was honestly freaking out. I had just paid that gentleman a lot of money to remove the bees, and I was out of money to pay for another removal. So, I decided I was going to take care of the bees myself, since I had no idea what else to do. I bought a suit off Amazon.com, drove out to the location, and my family basically said their prayers. I had no idea what I was getting myself into. The gentleman I had paid to remove the bees wasn't returning my calls.
Well, when I got there, the bees were gone! The guy was right, it does take a couple of weeks for the bees to leave! Of course, after I got back to Buda, then he ended up calling me back. We ended up talking, and became friends. I told him that now that I own the bee suit (at that time, a very ghetto suit), I was thinking of getting into bee removals myself. I was actually half joking, but he told me I should try it. Well, from there he ended up teaching me a lot, gave me a small apprenticeship, and mentored me. I ended up investing a ton of time into learning about bees. I took courses, read books, got registered with the Texas Apiary Inspection Service, invested thousands of dollars into equipment, and did a lot of free removals to learn the trade.
Basically, a lot of unfortunate situations combined and ended up giving me a life I never expected myself to get into. I have always loved animals, so it has been perfect for me.
I have worked many types of jobs, from working 14 hour shifts cooking in restaurants to working in a 130 degree warehouse, and I can easily say that I have never worked harder than as a bee removal specialist. I will never forget some of my roughest days. But in the end, I feel like I am doing something good for the environment. I feel like I am achieving something great, and doing good for something bigger than myself. I am saving bees that also help with pollinating the vegetables we must have as humans to survive.
Thanks for reading our story!