When a queen bee got trapped in the boot of a 4×4, you would never have thought that the owner would wake up with 20,000 worker bees clung to the car, would you?
Well, that’s exactly what happened in Pembrokeshire. When a silver Mitsubishi unknowingly drove off with a queen bee in the boot, her trusty worker bees did the honourable thing and chased after it for two whole days to try and save her.
It took five different beekeepers, park rangers and civilian helpers to carefully brush them off the car into a cardboard box, but the wind blew the box off the top of the car which left the swarm to cause havoc once again.
A 65-year-old beekeeper, Roger, told METRO about how the situation came about:
‘We think the queen had been attracted to something in the car, perhaps something sweet, and had got into a gap on the boot’s wiper blade or perhaps the hinge.
The swarm of around 20,000 had followed her and were sat around on the boot of the car. I brought over a cardboard box and carefully brushed them into there as quickly as possible as I was aware it was a big swarm in the middle of the high street.
I got about 15 or 20 stings for my trouble. I then left the cardboard box on the roof while we waited for the last few hundred bees to leave the boot but then a gust of wind blew it off and the queen fled back to the boot again.’
Since the owner of the car was oblivious of the queen in the boot, they probably thought the swarm would fly away when they drove off but they were so very wrong.
Roger had prior plans so had to pass on the job to a fellow beekeeper who stated that the same car was seen the very next day with the swarm of bees still clung to the boot.
Although we have no update on whether the queen bee was reunited with her swarm, we can only assume that the driver got the help they needed to set her free safely.
Roger added about the very peculiar situation:
‘I have been beekeeping for 30 years and I have never seen a swarm do that. It is natural for them to follow the queen but it is a strange thing to see and quite surprising to have a car followed for two days. It was quite amusing.’
Moral of the story: if you have a swarm of 20,000 bees clung to your car, you can probably bet that the Queen is in there somewhere and you need to get in touch with beekeepers pretty damn quick!