Safely Removing 50,000 Bees From A California Home

Twenty-seven-year-old Larry Chen was lounging about at his L.A. home when something peculiar caught his eye outside the window. On the other side of the glass was a giant swarm of bees — perhaps a couple hundred, Chen speculated in a YouTube video. Not wanting to hurt the bees, but certainly wanting to remove them from his property, Chen took to Craigslist to find someone to help with the removal process.

Chen, a photojournalist, eventually got in touch with a man named Mike Bee, a member of Backwards Beekeepers, ABC News reported. The Backwards Beekeepers are a group of individuals who aim to “do right by the bees” so inhabitants of the earth can reap the benefits, according to their website. Bee estimated that there were roughly 50,000 of the insects living inside Chen’s home back in July 2012, and that they’d been there for at least half a year, noted the ABC report.

After the beekeeper located the bees’ entry point, he and Chen got to work. First things first, they cleared out the room in which the extraction would take place. Then they laid down some plastic lining and got suited up — gloves, hats, face masks and all. The two looked ready for battle.

After cutting through the wall and locating the massive hive, the beekeeper exposed the bees to pine smoke to soothe them, he told ABC. Then he grabbed his vacuum, which is designed for the job, grabbed a chunk of the hive and started to suck up countless bees. Most went without putting up a fight.

At the end of Chen’s YouTube video, which has now been viewed over 1 million times, Chen says that 95 percent of the bees were saved and will live out their days on a bee farm. Chen never wanted to hurt the bees, so knowing that they’re safe should help him sleep at night, that and the lack of 50,000 bees buzzing on the other side of his bedroom wall.

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