A couple in Canada had no idea that about 30,000 bees were swarming inside their home -- until honey began to drip from a crack in their ceiling (pictured at left).
"We don't hear them buzzing or anything," Loretta Yates (pictured above with her husband, Kevin) told Canada's QMI Agency. "It's just the crack in the ceiling. Like, you're standing in the kitchen, and you get honey dripped down your hair. It's not pleasant."
A beekeeper inspected Loretta and Kevin Yates' home in Owen Sound, Ontario, two weeks ago and found the bees -- along with a nest of yellow jacket wasps -- between the ceiling of the first level and the floor of the second level. The beekeeper, David Schuit, originally estimated that 180,000 bees were in the house but revised that figure down to 30,000 because one swarm had taken off. He said that about 2,000 pounds of honey could also have been trapped up there.
Loretta Yates, who has a 22-month-old son with her husband, told the news service that she wasn't sleeping well, worrying that the ceiling would collapse and the bees would swarm the rest of the house.
"Until we'd seen the massive honey dripping and stuff, I didn't know what we were really dealing with was as big a problem as it's turned out to be," Loretta told QMI.
Even her neighbor, who runs a garage, complained that the bees have driven off customers.
This week, Schuit pulled down the ceiling in the kitchen to remove the bees and the honey. He said he removed the queen bees first, then the rest of the hives followed.
"If the queen leaves the hive, the whole hive goes with her," Schuit said. "Bees are very friendly once you learn how to work with them."
The Yates said they are "grateful" for Schuit's help.
"I don't know what we would do otherwise," Loretta Yates told QMI.
Before Schuit arrived, she had spotted another swarm of bees outside her house about a week ago. "The house was already full, so they couldn't actually get access into the house, so they just swarmed outside," she told QMI. "And it was just black. You'd hardly believe it was bees. It was just like a blanket."
The Yates' insurance company told QMI that the couple is not covered for the cost of the damage, which could top $3,000.
The one good thing is that Loretta Yates has been able to keep her sense of humor through the ordeal.
She said that she joked with her co-worker: "I have honey in my house. I must be the queen bee."
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