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Car Chased by 20,000 Bees for Two Days After Hive Queen Gets Stuck in Trunk

A woman in the UK was left baffled by a swarm of about 20,000 bees that latched onto the back of her car and refused to budge for over 28 hours. The mystery was eventually solved when she discovered that they were actually following their queen, which had gotten stuck in the trunk of the car!

It all started last Sunday, when Carol Howarth, 65, parked her silver Mitsubishi Outlander in the town center at Haverfordwest, in Pembrokeshire, Wales, during a shopping trip. While she was away, thousands of bees began to gather around the car, much to the amazement of passersby. A rescue squad of three beekeepers and a national park ranger were called in to capture the bees in a special box and by the time Carol returned to the car, the situation was under control.

She was thankful for their help, but her tryst with the bees was far from over. Little did she know that as she drove back home, the rest of the swarm was following her . “The next day I realised that some of the bees had followed me home,” she said. “There were a lot less than the first swarm.” So she called the beekeepers once again and they arrived at her home on Monday evening.

Photo: video caption Tom Moses/Facebook

“One theory was that the queen was trapped in my car and the swarm were following her,” Carol explained. “Apparently bees can swarm at this time of the year and it is a very strong instinct for them to follow the queen.”

“We think the queen bee 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,” added Roger Burns of Pembrokeshire Beekeepers, describing the first rescue attempt. “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.”

Photo: video caption Tom Moses/Facebook

“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. Unfortunately I had to go to dinner so another beekeeper took up the watch however eventually the car owner returned and drove off without realising the queen was still hidden in the back.”

“I think the owner must have been a bit scared of the swarm that was hanging around and just wanted to get away without realising they were attracted to the car because of the queen. We were left with a swarm of queen-less bees in the box and then heard that the same car was spotted the very next day with a swarm all over the boot, still chasing it.”

 

Roger said that this was the strangest incident he’d encountered in his 30 years of beekeeping. “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.”

Sources: Metro.co.uk, The Sun

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