More than 100,000 bees made the Channel 5 studios in Fort Smith their home. Friday beekeepers came to remove the massive colony.
The colony was only accessible by lift.
“It was magnificent,” said Leslye Buol, a bee enthusiast. “I’ve never seen a natural hive that close.”
Buol came to watch as beekeepers took apart the colony piece by piece. “When they told me they were gonna take this hive down I’m like oh please I wanna go. I wanna go. I wanna be a part of it,” she said.
Experts carefully cut the colony into smaller parts.
“The first priority is to keep the bees and the brood. The brood is that larva and the eggs in that,” said Casper Buol, a bee enthusiast.
Workers put the pieces in frames. They will use the pieces to make other hives.
“There’s no telling how many colonies will come out of this one swarm, this one colony here,” said Doug Lively, a beekeeper.
Lively believes they were able to save the queen bee. “In case if something happened to her we did get some fresh eggs, one to three day old eggs is what is required to hatch out a new queen,” said Lively.
Beekeepers say the colony at Channel 5 is unique because it survived the elements.
“They will be in my opinion very hearty to have survived this type of weather, no hive, no protection just nature,” said Buol.
Lively says only three people were stung in Friday’s removal operation, two of them beekeepers.
If you’re interested in bees check out some of the beekeeping classes coming up at the Janet Huckabee River Valley Nature Center. There are classes Feb. 25, March 4, and March 11.