Are you saying you know that this happening? That homeowners are paying $150 dollars for a swarm removal a mile from a commercial operation with a hundred hives.
I know I get at least 50% of my swarms from the very farmer with my bees or their neighbors. I have never charged.
I can honestly say I never heard of this ever happening.
For swarms not next door to my operations, I always ask the homeowners "Do you know where the nearest beekeeper is around here?". They almost NEVER know of any beekeepers in the area.
So while it's nice to bring this all up, I'm not convinced that any suggestions of beekeepers charging for swarms across the street (or a mile away) from their location, is actually true.
Again, I'm not sure what beekeepers you have around you, but please feel free to give a few examples. I think suggesting that beekeepers are charging $150 dollars to collect swarms from their own hives a bit denigrating, and perhaps unfounded.
No I am not saying I know of people charging money for swarm removals. I was just giving an example of what I think would be the wrong thing to do and I thought that was obvious. I was under the impression by a previous poster that we should not be doing anything for free. I hope most beeks are collecting swarms from neighbored properties as fast and free as they can.
I do know of a commercial beek near me who gets swarm calls all summer and does not collect them cause they told me so. I dont think they give beeks numbers to call either cause if they did then they might not need to buy bees from them. If they called me I would go get every one I could for free, paying for my own gas and whatever else. I certainly would not need to buy any more bees though and Im sure thats why I dont end up with the calls.
When we start charging for swarm removals then people will see bees kept on their place as a liability. I think even cutouts should be done without charging for labor. If not then they might as well just poison them. If people are willing to pay for materials and save the bees, then we have won the P.R. battle and thats a good thing.
I agree with you about the insurance. But to be careful the home owner and beekeeper should sign a liability waiver document waving all rights to sue over damages, stings, falling off a latter and breaking a leg or whatever. We dont need insurance, we need good old decency and respect.