Tens of thousands of bees infest eastern Henrico home

Published: Apr. 30, 2015 at 8:30 PM EDT|Updated: May. 10, 2015 at 8:30 PM EDT
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HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - Thousands of bees were found living at an eastern Henrico home. NBC12 was there when help arrived to take some of the sting out of the situation.

The family living in the home on Austin Avenue says they didn't notice the bees until the weather started getting warmer. Then they came home to a swarm of bees in their front yard. Then when a crew removed the paneling, they found tens of thousands of bees.

"I don't want them to go in the house, I got seven kids in the house," said Jason Williams, who is renting the home. Williams' family just moved in a month ago and didn't realize this home was already occupied by an entire colony of bees. Unwelcome roommates is an understatement.

An exterminator was called in but realized these are honeybees and are an important part of the food chain. Beekeeper Bernie Newcomb was called in, his tool of choice is a homemade bee vacuum.

"If you take them any other way you're going to end up killing a lot more bees trying to brush them off, this is really the only humane way to get them off of there," Newcomb said.

The box is large and there are vents to keep them cool. Newcomb says he actually wants to save this colony. He says he's going to move them so they can start a new colony away from a home.

Newcomb says an infestation like this is common. He says people may notice swarms. But a honeybee swarm doesn't have a nest and Newcomb says for the most part it's harmless.

Newcomb says beekeepers want to save as many insects as possible so it's best to call a professional.

Now there are bees left behind but Newcomb says without their queen, it's likely they will die off in the next few days. Williams says he does not have any plans to move out as long as those bees don't try to move back in.

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