Every year in the summer someone will ring ,"so-and-so has a swarm of bees in their garden – would you like it?". So I set off with a bee suit and a cardboard box to pick it up.

A swarm of bees is one of the wonders of nature, and people's response to one landing in their garden varies.

Sometimes you turn up to find people are angry about it, or frightened by it, but normally they are awestruck and want to share the impact it has made on them.

"I've never seen so many bees",they will say. "The sky went dark", "it sounded like a helicopter". By the time I get there a cluster of between 10,000 and 30,000 bees is hanging from a branch, or under a roof, or inside a compost bin, like an ominously buzzing pineapple.

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The bees need rehoming; the sort of location a swarm of bees will choose for itself in a city suburb, inside a shed or a chimney or under a roof, will bring them into conflict with the humans living in the same place.

To avoid them being destroyed I will coax them into my cardboard box and take them a few miles away where I have an empty hive waiting.

A swarm of bees is looking for a new home, and the hive is just the sort of place they are looking for. If I put the swarm on the ground in front of the hive, the bees will seethe around in confusion for a few minutes.

Some scouts will find the hive and report back to the main body and I will see a sense of order and purpose gradually coming over the confusion. A row of bees forms by the hive entrance fanning their wings to encourage the others in.

The mass of bees gradually turns as individuals towards the entrance and in they walk,for all the world like soldiers marching in formation.

In a few minutes they are in their new home and I am struck as always by the wonder of it all, the sheer wonder of it.