A female beekeeper from Texas, Erika Thompson, posted a video on social media on Friday, and that has already been viewed million times. They all watched Thompson move a bee colony to a new destination with her bare hands. The bees had spent at least two years under the wooden floor of a shed in the garden.
“An ordinary Tuesday for me,” Thompson said afterwards, amazed at the often incredible reactions to the video. Quite a few mortals apparently watched with vicarious fear how the beekeeper removed the bee colony from under the wooden floor without any protection after more than two years.
“The owner wanted an exterminator to come, but the tenants insisted on saving the bees, so I was summoned,” Thompson says in the video.
It was only when she lifted a shelf from the floor that she saw the colony’s size. She started transferring the bees to a beehive without any protective clothing.
Thompson just took “bunches” of bees on her hand and put them in the hive. “In general, honeybees will not sting you,” said Thompson. “I hope that people will get a different idea of bees or learn something about them by watching these kinds of videos.”
The next task was to get the queen out of the gigantic crowd. “The queen is the main bee in the colony, she lays all the eggs for the colony, and the other bees follow her,” Thompson explains.
“Often the entire colony simply follows the queen to the new destination.” After fifteen minutes, the beekeeper caught hold of the queen, and she was safe – thanks to a special ‘queen clamp’ – placed in the new beehive.
“The clamp is made in such a way that the worker bees that assist the queen can still take care of her, because they are smaller than her.”
The bees also gave signals to each other so that they could all find their new home quickly. Thompson left the colony overnight to give all the bees time to move. The whole operation was completed the following day.